Energy Resources

Hydrocarbon Resources

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The Hydrocarbon Resources Program focuses on developing an understanding of the basic concepts and processes governing the storage and nonisothermal flow of hydrocarbons in porous media during production, as well as an understanding of associated coupled processes and phenomena involved in resource development and production.

Highlights

Project

The Hydraulic Fracturing Field Test (HFTS) Project

The Hydraulic Fracturing Field Test (HFTS) project, fielded within the Wolfcamp Formation in the Permian Basin, provides an excellent opportunity to further develop our understanding of the geomechanical response to hydraulic stimulation and associated fluid transport and hydrocarbon production in nano-porous lithologies. The drilling program was designed to elucidate the intra- and inter-well stress interactions…

Project

Numerical and Laboratory Investigations for Maximization of Production from Tight/Shale Oil Reservoirs…

Numerical and Laboratory Investigations for Maximization of Production from Tight/Shale Oil Reservoirs: From Fundamental Studies to Technology Development and Evaluation Gas production from tight gas/shale gas reservoirs over the last decade has met with spectacular success with the advent of advanced reservoir stimulation techniques (mainly hydraulic fracturing), to the extent that shale gas is now…

Program Overview

The Hydrocarbon Resources Program is one of four Programs in the Earth and Environmental Sciences Area’s Energy Resources Program Area. The Program focuses on developing an understanding of the basic concepts and processes governing the storage and nonisothermal flow of hydrocarbons in porous media during production (under a variety of challenging conditions), as well as an understanding of associated coupled processes and phenomena (geomechanical, geophysical, chemical) involved in resource development and production. In addition, the Program strives to translate the development of fundamental knowledge into production methods and strategies that can be easily adopted by the industry.

While the Hydrocarbon Resources Program is designed to address all issues related to hydrocarbon recovery (including reservoir integrity and improving geophysical imaging), the primary focus of the program is unconventional resources, such as hydrates, tight/shale gas, and shale oil. Because such resources are expected to be the main subject of fossil-energy recovery activities in the foreseeable future, it is an important and growing component of EESA’s research portfolio.

Support for the Hydrocarbon Research Program comes from diverse sources. Research related to hydrates is supported by the DOE Hydrate Research Program, by international research organizations (e.g., the Korean Institute of Geosciences and Mineral Resources), and by national and international petroleum companies. Research in the area of hydrocarbon recovery from tight sands and shales receives support from the Research Partnership for Secure Energy America (RPSEA), and from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Featured Projects

Project

Behavior of Sediments Containing Methane Hydrate, Water and Gas…

Behavior of Sediments Containing Methane Hydrate, Water, and Gas Subjected to Gradients and Changing Conditions   OBJECTIVES The objective of this work is to measure physical, chemical, mechanical, and hydrologic property changes in sediments containing methane hydrate, water, and gas subjected to varying stimuli and conditions such as injection of non-methane gases, effects of sediment…

Project

Numerical and Laboratory Investigations for Maximization of Production from Tight/Shale Oil Reservoirs…

Numerical and Laboratory Investigations for Maximization of Production from Tight/Shale Oil Reservoirs: From Fundamental Studies to Technology Development and Evaluation Gas production from tight gas/shale gas reservoirs over the last decade has met with spectacular success with the advent of advanced reservoir stimulation techniques (mainly hydraulic fracturing), to the extent that shale gas is now…

Project

The Eagle Ford Shale Laboratory (EFSL) Project

The Eagle Ford Shale Laboratory: A Field Study of the Stimulated Reservoir Volume, Detailed Fracture Characteristics, and EOR Potential   OBJECTIVES The Recipient will conduct a science-based field laboratory project in the Eagle Ford Shale Formation. Utilizing newly-developed monitoring solutions, the project team will deliver unprecedented comprehensive high-quality field data to improve scientific knowledge of…

Project

The Hydraulic Fracturing Field Test (HFTS) Project

The Hydraulic Fracturing Field Test (HFTS) project, fielded within the Wolfcamp Formation in the Permian Basin, provides an excellent opportunity to further develop our understanding of the geomechanical response to hydraulic stimulation and associated fluid transport and hydrocarbon production in nano-porous lithologies. The drilling program was designed to elucidate the intra- and inter-well stress interactions…