23Na and 1H NMR Relaxometry of Shale at High Magnetic Field

Donghan Yang, Ravinath Kausik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Formation evaluation of unconventional reservoirs is challenging due to the coexistence of different phases such as kerogen, bitumen, movable and bound light hydrocarbon and water. Current low-frequency (0.05 T) nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) laboratory and logging methods are incapable of quantitatively separating the different phases. We demonstrate the utility of high-field (9.4 T) NMR 2D T1-T2 measurements for separating hydrocarbon and the clay-interacting aqueous phases in shale based on the difference in the frequency dependence of the spin-lattice relaxation time. Furthermore, we demonstrate 23Na NMR as a promising complementary technique to conventional 1H NMR for shale fluid typing, taking advantage of the fact that sodium ions are only present in the aqueous phase. We validate high-field (9.4 T) 23Na-1H NMR relaxometry for assessing brine-filled porosity and brine salinity in various porous materials, including porous glass, conventional rocks, clays, and shale, and apply it for differentiating hydrocarbon versus aqueous components and also the clay-associated versus free water in Eagle Ford shale cores. This work lays the groundwork for developing future downhole 23Na-1H NMR logging techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4509-4519
Number of pages11
JournalEnergy and Fuels
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 16 2016
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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