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UPseis: Upscaling of seismic properties in fractured fluid reservoirs

1 PhD position granted by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)

Principal Investigator: Marcel Frehner

PhD-student: Pei-Ju Rita Shih

Project duration: May 2013 - April 2016

Project homepage: UPseis

Short description

A detailed description and understanding of fluid reservoir rocks is of great economic, environmental, and scientific interest, for example for CO2-sequestration, hydrocarbon exploration, nuclear waste disposal, or groundwater aquifer remediation. Such fluid reservoirs are commonly probed using seismic investigation methods. Because a large part of the reservoir porosity and permeability can be due to fractures, understanding their effects on the seismic response of a rock is therefore essential for a reliable rock characterization.

The project "UPseis" investigates seismic phenomena in fractured rocks, with a special focus on the so-called Krauklis wave. This special wave mode is bound to fluid-filled fractures. When propagating back and forth along a fracture, a Krauklis wave can emit a seismic signal to the surrounding rock with a characteristic frequency. When picked up at the Earth's surface, such seismic signals may contain information on the fracture density, fracture orientation, or fluid type in the subsurface reservoir.

The Krauklis wave phenomenon will be studied in detail on the scale of individual fractures both by applying numerical wave-propagation simulations and in the laboratory. The results will then be upscaled to the reservoir-scale to better understand the bulk seismic response of fractured fluid reservoirs.