Impact of hydrate saturation on water permeability in hydrate-bearing sediments

Nariman Mahabadi, Sheng Dai, Yongkoo Seol, Jaewon Jang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

125 Scopus citations


Permeability of the hydrate-bearing sediments critically affects the hydrate dissociation process as well as the rate and efficiency of gas production. Reported permeability values are observed to be widely are very scattered owing to the dependence on multiple factors such as experimental conditions and test procedures. It is critical that the permeability is measured accurately to enable prediction of long-term gas production using numerical simulation for an economic development of hydrate-bearing reservoirs. In this study, the tetrahydrofuran (THF) hydrates that exhibit pore habits of the pore-filling pattern are formed in sediments, and the water permeability is quantified as a function of hydrate saturation. The results show that a decrease in the permeability for an increase in the hydrate saturation. Based on the measured values that are bounded by Kozeny grain-coating and pore-filling models, the fitting parameters of the empirical permeability models are suggested for use in numerical simulation of long-term hydrate dissociation. Wave velocity measurements reveal pore habits of pore-filling pattern of THF hydrates in the sediments with Sh < 0.5, and a gradual transition to patchy and load-bearing pore-habits when Sh > 0.6. The numerical simulation results obtained using the complementary pore-network model suggest that the THF hydrates in the sediments may form in small clusters with an average patch size of ∼4 pores.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)696-703
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Petroleum Science and Engineering
StatePublished - Mar 2019


  • 3004 gas and hydrate systems
  • 3022 marine sediments: processes and transport
  • Hydrate saturation
  • Hydrate-bearing sediments
  • Pore habit
  • Pore network model
  • Water permeability
  • Wave velocity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Fuel Technology
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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