Research Papers: Energy Systems Analysis

A Model of Multiphase Flow Dynamics Considering the Hydrated Bubble Behaviors and Its Application to Deepwater Kick Simulation

[+] Author and Article Information
Xiaohui Sun, Yonghai Gao, Zhiyuan Wang

School of Petroleum Engineering,
China University of Petroleum (East China),
Qingdao 266580, China

Baojiang Sun

School of Petroleum Engineering,
China University of Petroleum (East China),
66 Changjiang West Road, Huangdao,
Qingdao 266580, China
e-mail: sunbj1128@126.com

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Advanced Energy Systems Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENERGY RESOURCES TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received July 27, 2017; final manuscript received May 2, 2018; published online May 29, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Reza Sheikhi.

J. Energy Resour. Technol 140(8), 082004 (May 29, 2018) (11 pages) Paper No: JERT-17-1389; doi: 10.1115/1.4040190 History: Received July 27, 2017; Revised May 02, 2018

The interaction between hydrated bubble growth and multiphase flow dynamics is important in deepwater wellbore/pipeline flow. In this study, we derived a hydrate shell growth model considering the intrinsic kinetics, mass and heat transfer, and hydrodynamics mechanisms in which a partly coverage assumption is introduced for elucidating the synergy of bubble hydrodynamics and hydrate morphology. Moreover, a hydro-thermo-hydrate model is developed considering the intercoupling effects including interphase mass and heat transfer, and the slippage of hydrate-coated bubble. Through comparison with experimental data, the performance of proposed model is validated and evaluated. The model is applied to analyze the wellbore dynamics process of kick evolution during deepwater drilling. The simulation results show that the hydrate formation region is mainly near the seafloor affected by the fluid temperature and pressure distributions along the wellbore. The volume change and the mass transfer rate of a hydrated bubble vary complicatedly, because of hydrate formation, hydrate decomposition, and bubble dissolution (both gas and hydrate). Moreover, hydrate phase transition can significantly alter the void fraction and migration velocity of free gas in two aspects: (1) when gas enters the hydrate stability field (HSF), a solid hydrate shell will form on the gas bubble surface, and thereby, the velocity and void fraction of free gas can be considerably decreased; (2) the free gas will separate from solid hydrate and expand rapidly near the sea surface (outside the HSF), which can lead to an abrupt hydrostatic pressure loss and explosive development of the gas kick.

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Fig. 1

Schematic of lifetime of hydrate coated bubble

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Fig. 2

Schematic of the hydrate shell growth process on a gas bubble

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Fig. 3

Schematic of heat transfer during deepwater during

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Fig. 4

Experimental pressure and simulated gas solubility at different times

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Fig. 5

Comparison of experimental and simulated results of formed hydrate moles

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Fig. 6

(a) Flow function of flow field (R = 2 mm) and (b) mass transfer boundary layer surrounding a rising bubble

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Fig. 7

Lifetime of a single bubble (R = 2 mm) during kick evolution

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Fig. 8

Hydrate stability field and distributions of temperature and gas solubility along the wellbore at 5500 s

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Fig. 9

Annulus temperature profiles along the wellbore at different times

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Fig. 10

Distribution of hydrate along the wellbore at different times

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Fig. 11

Distribution of dissolved gas along the wellbore at different times

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Fig. 12

The effect of hydrate phase transition on pit gain variation



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