Frictional stability-permeability relationships for fractures in shales

Yi Fang, Derek Elsworth, Chaoyi Wang, Takuya Ishibashi, Jeffrey P. Fitts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

35 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

There is wide concern that fluid injection in the subsurface, such as for the stimulation of shale reservoirs or for geological CO2 sequestration (GCS), has the potential to induce seismicity that may change reservoir permeability due to fault slip. However, the impact of induced seismicity on fracture permeability evolution remains unclear due to the spectrum of modes of fault reactivation (e.g., stable versus unstable). As seismicity is controlled by the frictional response of fractures, we explore friction-stability-permeability relationships through the concurrent measurement of frictional and hydraulic properties of artificial fractures in Green River shale (GRS) and Opalinus shale (OPS). We observe that carbonate-rich GRS shows higher frictional strength but weak neutral frictional stability. The GRS fracture permeability declines during shearing while an increased sliding velocity reduces the rate of permeability decline. By comparison, the phyllosilicate-rich OPS has lower friction and strong stability while the fracture permeability is reduced due to the swelling behavior that dominates over the shearing induced permeability reduction. Hence, we conclude that the friction-stability-permeability relationship of a fracture is largely controlled by mineral composition and that shale mineral compositions with strong frictional stability may be particularly subject to permanent permeability reduction during fluid infiltration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1760-1776
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth
Volume122
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017

Fingerprint

shales
Shale
permeability
shale
Rivers
rivers
Friction
Shearing
friction
Minerals
Fault slips
shearing
seismicity
Fluids
minerals
river
Carbonates
fluid injection
induced seismicity
Chemical analysis

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Fang, Yi ; Elsworth, Derek ; Wang, Chaoyi ; Ishibashi, Takuya ; Fitts, Jeffrey P. / Frictional stability-permeability relationships for fractures in shales. In: Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth. 2017 ; Vol. 122, No. 3. pp. 1760-1776.
@article{ab6cc4de866647548f4a1c6e7c3cb26f,
title = "Frictional stability-permeability relationships for fractures in shales",
abstract = "There is wide concern that fluid injection in the subsurface, such as for the stimulation of shale reservoirs or for geological CO2 sequestration (GCS), has the potential to induce seismicity that may change reservoir permeability due to fault slip. However, the impact of induced seismicity on fracture permeability evolution remains unclear due to the spectrum of modes of fault reactivation (e.g., stable versus unstable). As seismicity is controlled by the frictional response of fractures, we explore friction-stability-permeability relationships through the concurrent measurement of frictional and hydraulic properties of artificial fractures in Green River shale (GRS) and Opalinus shale (OPS). We observe that carbonate-rich GRS shows higher frictional strength but weak neutral frictional stability. The GRS fracture permeability declines during shearing while an increased sliding velocity reduces the rate of permeability decline. By comparison, the phyllosilicate-rich OPS has lower friction and strong stability while the fracture permeability is reduced due to the swelling behavior that dominates over the shearing induced permeability reduction. Hence, we conclude that the friction-stability-permeability relationship of a fracture is largely controlled by mineral composition and that shale mineral compositions with strong frictional stability may be particularly subject to permanent permeability reduction during fluid infiltration.",
author = "Yi Fang and Derek Elsworth and Chaoyi Wang and Takuya Ishibashi and Fitts, {Jeffrey P.}",
year = "2017",
month = "3",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1002/2016JB013435",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "122",
pages = "1760--1776",
journal = "Journal of Geophysical Research",
issn = "0148-0227",
publisher = "American Geophysical Union",
number = "3",

}

Frictional stability-permeability relationships for fractures in shales. / Fang, Yi; Elsworth, Derek; Wang, Chaoyi; Ishibashi, Takuya; Fitts, Jeffrey P.

In: Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, Vol. 122, No. 3, 01.03.2017, p. 1760-1776.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Frictional stability-permeability relationships for fractures in shales

AU - Fang, Yi

AU - Elsworth, Derek

AU - Wang, Chaoyi

AU - Ishibashi, Takuya

AU - Fitts, Jeffrey P.

PY - 2017/3/1

Y1 - 2017/3/1

N2 - There is wide concern that fluid injection in the subsurface, such as for the stimulation of shale reservoirs or for geological CO2 sequestration (GCS), has the potential to induce seismicity that may change reservoir permeability due to fault slip. However, the impact of induced seismicity on fracture permeability evolution remains unclear due to the spectrum of modes of fault reactivation (e.g., stable versus unstable). As seismicity is controlled by the frictional response of fractures, we explore friction-stability-permeability relationships through the concurrent measurement of frictional and hydraulic properties of artificial fractures in Green River shale (GRS) and Opalinus shale (OPS). We observe that carbonate-rich GRS shows higher frictional strength but weak neutral frictional stability. The GRS fracture permeability declines during shearing while an increased sliding velocity reduces the rate of permeability decline. By comparison, the phyllosilicate-rich OPS has lower friction and strong stability while the fracture permeability is reduced due to the swelling behavior that dominates over the shearing induced permeability reduction. Hence, we conclude that the friction-stability-permeability relationship of a fracture is largely controlled by mineral composition and that shale mineral compositions with strong frictional stability may be particularly subject to permanent permeability reduction during fluid infiltration.

AB - There is wide concern that fluid injection in the subsurface, such as for the stimulation of shale reservoirs or for geological CO2 sequestration (GCS), has the potential to induce seismicity that may change reservoir permeability due to fault slip. However, the impact of induced seismicity on fracture permeability evolution remains unclear due to the spectrum of modes of fault reactivation (e.g., stable versus unstable). As seismicity is controlled by the frictional response of fractures, we explore friction-stability-permeability relationships through the concurrent measurement of frictional and hydraulic properties of artificial fractures in Green River shale (GRS) and Opalinus shale (OPS). We observe that carbonate-rich GRS shows higher frictional strength but weak neutral frictional stability. The GRS fracture permeability declines during shearing while an increased sliding velocity reduces the rate of permeability decline. By comparison, the phyllosilicate-rich OPS has lower friction and strong stability while the fracture permeability is reduced due to the swelling behavior that dominates over the shearing induced permeability reduction. Hence, we conclude that the friction-stability-permeability relationship of a fracture is largely controlled by mineral composition and that shale mineral compositions with strong frictional stability may be particularly subject to permanent permeability reduction during fluid infiltration.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85014579458&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85014579458&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1002/2016JB013435

DO - 10.1002/2016JB013435

M3 - Article

VL - 122

SP - 1760

EP - 1776

JO - Journal of Geophysical Research

JF - Journal of Geophysical Research

SN - 0148-0227

IS - 3

ER -