Advanced NMR methodologies in rock core analysis
¹H NMR techniques have gained extensive acceptance in petrophysics for the evaluation of fluid-saturating reservoir rocks. This thesis presents the development of new NMR methods regarding the reserves (determination of pore length scales and surface relaxivities), productivity (estimates of permeability) and recovery of fluids (resolves of saturation evolution) in rocks. Traditionally, pore lengths are evaluated from the ground relaxation eigenmodes of spin-bearing molecules in pore space. This evaluation is not straightforward since it is affected by surface relaxivity. Here, we use an approach to determine pore length from detecting the high relaxation eigenmodes, in which way the eigenvalue spectrum directly scales to the pore size distribution. Based on this, we extend this approach for the use with low-field NMR spectrometers and 2D NMR eigenmode correlation methods. Surface relaxivity can be further extracted from these 2D correlation maps, which is in agreement with an independent NMR measurement. Permeability is generally estimated from surface relaxation via empirical pore-network models. However, for heterogeneous rocks a single (or averaged) permeability value may not be adequate. Therefore, we measure surface relaxation in conjunction with MRI techniques. Permeability profiles can then be obtained from spatially resolved relaxation maps yielding local connectedness between adjacent slices. The results are confirmed by the comparison of brine-permeability measurements. MRI experiments of fluids in rocks at reservoir-like conditions may yield optimized recovery strategies of reservoir fluids. In this context we combine MRI with diffusion-relaxation correlation measurements during flooding intervals. The results provide substantial information, such as flooding front and saturation profiles of immiscible fluids discriminated by fluid type.