The special core analysis laboratory consists of several high pressure flooding rigs. The flooding rigs are equipped to perform 2- and 3-phase floods on core samples up to a pressure of 700 bars and temperature of 160°C with a maximum core length of 120 cm (Fig. 1). Studies may include compositional analysis of produced fluids as well as additional chemical analysis of fluids and characterization of the core material. As an option, flooding experiments can be run with in-situ measurements of fluid saturation by gamma attenuation techniques. The laboratory has access to X-ray tomography for rock characterization as well as for in-situ fluid visualization. A special 2D visual cell has been constructed in order to perform visual flow experiments in specially designed porous media (40x60 cm) at ambient conditions. Fluid flow relevant for CO2 movement (migration, segregation, accumulation) in heterogeneous porous media can be studied in this apparatus. Numerical modelling of the core floods is usually an integrated part of experiments.
The core laboratory has flexible set-ups of flooding rigs which may easily be adapted according to specific needs related to the porous medium (sand packs, core sizes, etc.) and flooding conditions (volume rates, type of fluids, fluid phases, pressure and temperature). The laboratory may also offer support for rock characterization and in-situ fluid saturation. Experiments may be performed at high pressure and high temperature conditions. The laboratory is conducting research within multiphase flow processes in porous media. This work is mostly related to enhanced oil recovery (EOR) processes including CO2 injection for EOR as well as studies of CO2 flow and transport processes. There is a special interest in improvements of in-situ CO2 saturation measurement techniques to reveal new information from core flooding experiments. The core laboratory is working in close connection with the fluid laboratory, and most core flooding projects will need fluid analysis to be included. The core laboratory is also working in close cooperation with other SINTEF PR laboratories within rock characterization and rock mechanics. In addition, SINTEF PR is collaborating with the laboratories of Institute of Petroleum, NTNU and especially on the use of X-ray computer tomography for rock characterization and insitu fluid saturation.
The laboratory offers a wide range of services and special research-oriented of experiments. Some of the more standard experiments and tests are listed: