This process – if it occurs – imply huge cost savings for P&A operations. However, the mechanisms that promote or prevent natural barrier formation are not yet fully understood. We study the process of forming a shale barrier experimentally, analytically and numerically:
- SINTEF has specially designed a Shale Barrier Test; a downscaled simulation of the gap closure process enabling monitoring of sealing capacity and stress on the casing. Pre- and post-test CT scans reveal the extent and nature of the formation barrier.
- Rock characterization tests and traditional hollow cylinder tests are also a part of the study.