A discontinuous overlapping control volume finite element method for multi-phase porous media flow using dynamic unstructured mesh optimization

J. Gomes, C. C. Pain, M. D. Jackson, Pablo Salinas, James R. Percival, Dimitrios Pavlidis, Zhihua Xie

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We present a new, high-order, control-volume-finite-element (CVFE) method with discontinuous Nth- order representation for pressure and (N+1)th-order for velocity. The method conserves mass and ensures that the extended Darcy equations for multi-phase flow are exactly enforced, but does not require the use of control volumes (CVs) that span domain boundaries. We demonstrate that the approach, amongst other features, accurately preserves sharp saturation changes associated with high aspect ratio geologic features such as fractures and mudstones, allowing efficient simulation of flow in highly heterogeneous models. Moreover, in conjunction with dynamic mesh optimization, in which the mesh adapts in space and time to key solution fields such as pressure, velocity or saturation whilst honoring a surface-based representation of the underlying geologic heterogeneity, accurate solutions are obtained at significantly lower computational cost than an equivalent fine, fixed mesh and conventional CVFE methods. The work presented is significant for two reasons. First, it resolves a long-standing problem associated with the use of classical CVFE methods to model flow in highly heterogeneous porous media; second, it reduces computational cost/increases solution accuracy through the use of dynamic mesh optimization without compromising parallelization.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSociety of Petroleum Engineers - SPE Reservoir Simulation Symposium 2015
PublisherSociety of Petroleum Engineers
Pages1511-1528
Number of pages18
Volume3
ISBN (Electronic)9781510800618
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015
EventSPE Reservoir Simulation Symposium 2015 - Houston, United States
Duration: 23 Feb 201525 Feb 2015

Conference

ConferenceSPE Reservoir Simulation Symposium 2015
CountryUnited States
CityHouston
Period23/02/1525/02/15

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Geochemistry and Petrology

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    Gomes, J., Pain, C. C., Jackson, M. D., Salinas, P., Percival, J. R., Pavlidis, D., & Xie, Z. (2015). A discontinuous overlapping control volume finite element method for multi-phase porous media flow using dynamic unstructured mesh optimization. In Society of Petroleum Engineers - SPE Reservoir Simulation Symposium 2015 (Vol. 3, pp. 1511-1528). Society of Petroleum Engineers.