Swelling Measurements of a Low Rank Coal in Supercritical CO2


Coal swelling in the presence of water as well as CO2 is a well-known phenomenon, and these may affect the permeability of coal. Quantifying swelling effects is becoming an important issue to verify the suitability of particular coal seams for CO2-enhanced coal bed methane recovery projects. In this report, coal swelling experiments using a visualization method in the CO2 supercritical conditions were conducted on crushed coal samples. The measurement apparatus was designed specifically for the present swelling experiment using a visualization method. Crushed coal samples were used instead of block coal samples to shorten equilibrium time and to solve the problem of limited availability of core coal samples. Dry and wet coal samples were used in the experiments because there is relatively limited information about how the swelling of coal by CO2 is affected by water saturation. Moreover, some coal seams are saturated with water in initial reservoir conditions. The maximum volumetric swelling was around 3% at 10 MPa for dry samples and almost half that at the same pressure for wet samples. The wet samples showed lower volumetric swelling than dry ones because the wet coal samples were already swollen by water. Experimental results obtained for swelling were comparable with other reports. Our visualization method using crushed samples has advantages in terms of sample preparation and experimental execution compared with the other methods used to measure coal swelling using block samples.

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F. Anggara, K. Sasaki and Y. Sugai, "Swelling Measurements of a Low Rank Coal in Supercritical CO2," International Journal of Geosciences, Vol. 4 No. 5, 2013, pp. 863-870. doi: 10.4236/ijg.2013.45080.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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