Viscoplastic effects of Newtonian fluids in nanopores: a molecular dynamics study

YS Zhou and ZY Song and M Chen, MOLECULAR PHYSICS, 120 (2022).

DOI: 10.1080/00268976.2022.2117660

Understanding the influence of fluid-solid interactions on low-velocity non-Darcy flow in ultra-low permeability reservoirs is essential for enhanced oil recovery. The Poiseuille flows of C12H26 and argon under different pressure gradients in a nanopore are simulated using the molecular dynamics method. The results demonstrate that the confined fluids behave as elastic solids under lower pressure gradient but as viscous fluids under higher pressure gradient in the simulation. With increase of the external pressure gradient, the generated shear stress exceeds the yield stress related to the fluid-solid interaction and leads to a transition. This phenomenon indicates that the confined fluids in the nanopore exhibit apparent viscoplasticity. According to the viscoplastic hypothesis, the confined fluid can be divided into elastic and viscous layers, depending on the competition between the shear and yield stresses. The simulation results also indicate the yield stress increases near the wall. Assuming that the yield stress is inversely proportional to the distance from the wall, a non-Darcy flow model is proposed to calculate the flow rate by pressure gradient. The predictions of the model are consistent with the simulations for both C12H26 and argon, indicating the similarity of viscoplastic effects on the seepage of both fluid-nanopore systems.

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