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Second Thermal and Fluids Engineering  Conference

ISSN: 2379-1748
ISBN: 978-1-56700-430-4

Thermal and Lagrangian transport analysis of chaotic advection in 2D anisotropic porous media


Traditional methods for heat recovery from geothermal reservoirs employ a static pair of injector-extractor wells. Such systems can be modeled in a 2D circular domain with a source-sink pair located diametrically opposite to each other on the domain circumference. Recent studies by Metcalfe et al have shown that by periodically reorienting the source-sink pair the so-called rotated potential mixing (RPM) flow becomes capable of accomplishing chaotic advection, thereby ensuring distribution of production fluid through the reservoir and dramatically enhancing heat extraction rates. This can in practice be implemented in the field by having a circular array of wells separated by an angle θ. The effect of reorientation can then be achieved by periodically turning off the current pair and turning on the pair located θ apart after time τ. However, the aforementioned studies concern isotropic media conditions, whereas realistic reservoirs are anisotropic. As a first step we investigate numerically the Lagrangian transport characteristics of production fluid in 2D anisotropic RPM flows based on a dynamical-systems approach making use of Poincaré sections. Results indicate that for highly anisotropic media, non-alignment of the wells with the permeability direction promotes efficient distribution of production fluid (and thereby heat transport), where as alignment of the wells with the permeability direction can result in prolonged confinement of production fluid to a subregion of the reservoir. We compliment this Lagrangian transport study with a heat transfer analysis using Dynamic mode decomposition (DMD) of time series data determined through solving the advection-diffusion equation in RPM flows.

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