Tong Wang, Zhixue Sun, Hai Sun, Zhangxin Chen, Jun Yao

Development of a Scalable Parallel Compositional Simulator for Thermo-Hydromechanical Coupling in Fractured Rocks Using an Embedded Discrete Fracture Model

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology

Summary Numerical simulation of thermo-hydromechanical (THM) coupling in practical complex fractured rocks is an essential but challenging issue for the evaluation and optimization of underground energy production. In this study, we present our work on a scalable parallel compositional simulator for THM coupling, which is suitable for massive 3D polygonal fractures. In addition, we also present the improvements, parallel implementation, and optimization of an embedded discrete fracture model (EDFM). A unified cell-centered grid system based on the finite volume method (FVM) is used for all governing equations, and an extended stencil is adopted for mechanical equations to resolve the low-resolution defect of the traditional FVM. The deformation of both matrix rock and fractures is considered. A sequential fully implicit (SFI) method is adopted to solve THM coupling. This simulator is validated against three analytical solution models. Finally, we apply the simulator to two cases including a multilayered shale gas reservoir with massive natural fractures and a fractured geothermal model using CO2 as a working fluid. We also test the performance and parallel scalability on 1,024 CPU cores with up to 50 million matrix gridblocks and 5.5 million fracture gridblocks. The results show that this simulator can efficiently solve the THM coupling problem in practical massive fractures.

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