Oil/Gas Reservoirs

Computer Modeling of Coal Bed Methane Recovery in Coal Mines

[+] Author and Article Information
Jerzy Stopa

 AGH University of Science and Technology, Mickiewicza Avenue 30, 30-059 Krakow, Polandstopa@agh.edu.pl

Stanisław Nawrat

 AGH University of Science and Technology, Mickiewicza Avenue 30, 30-059 Krakow, Polandnawstan@agh.edu.pl

J. Energy Resour. Technol 134(3), 032804 (Aug 06, 2012) (11 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4007003 History: Received October 14, 2011; Revised May 17, 2012; Published August 06, 2012; Online August 06, 2012

This paper presents an improved reservoir simulation approach to methane production in a longwall mining environment. The coal beds are naturally fractured systems with the gas adsorbed into the coal matrix. Fractures penetrating the coal matrix have limited storage capacity, but they play the role of a gas transportation system. The proposed simulation technique is based on the assumption that a mass of coal removed by mining transfers its gas to adjacent fractures. By using an ECLIPSE coal bed methane simulator, the pore volume of the matrix represents the coal volume of the simulation cell. Consequently, the exploitation of coal can be simulated by modifying the matrix pore volume over time. This paper presents theoretical backgrounds of this approach and investigates numerical effects. A case study of the Moszczenica coal mine in Poland, including computer simulations of methane production, is also reported to show that a long history of the methane and coal recovery can be reproduced using the proposed technique.

Copyright © 2012 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

3D representation of grid model

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Figure 2

Schematics of a geometric grid representing the panel. Mining advances from left to right.

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Figure 3

Average reservoir pressure. Comparison of the cases.

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Figure 4

Gas production rate. Comparison of the cases.

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Figure 5

Volume of methane in the coal matrix. Comparison of the cases.

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Figure 6

Volume of methane in the fractures system. Comparison of the cases.

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Figure 7

The effects of reducing the coal amount in the model on the amount of free gas in the fractures and on the amount of gas stored in the matrix

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Figure 8

An interaction between adjacent simulation blocks, the shifting of a desorption response to porosity modification

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Figure 9

Influence of porosity modification on free gas content in the adjacent simulation blocks

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Figure 10

Numerical model of the mine; simulation grid: 62 × 39 × 46 = 111,228 cells, Dx = Dy = 100 m, Dz—variable

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Figure 11

Ventilation system model consisting of 17 galleries (roadways)

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Figure 12

Reproduction of mine ventilation history from 1964 to 2008 and a forecast to the year 2029

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Figure 13

Simulated methane content in simulation cells, December 31, 2008

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Figure 14

Forecast of methane production rates from the existing ventilation system and from new wells

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Figure 15

Forecast of methane production rate from new wells




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