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Computer tomography in petroleum engineering research

Akın, Serhat
Kovscek, A.R.
Imaging the distribution of porosity, permeability, and fluid phases is important to understanding single and multiphase flow characteristics of porous media. X-ray computed tomography (CT) has emerged as an important and powerful tool for non-destructive imaging because it is relatively easy to apply, can offer fine spatial resolution and is adaptable to many types of experimental procedures and flow conditions. This paper gives an overview of CT technology for imaging multiphase flow in porous media, the principles behind the technology and effective experimental design. By critically reviewing prior work using this important tool, we hope to provide a better understanding of its use and a pathway to improved analysis of CT-derived data. Because of the wide variety of image processing options, they are discussed in some detail.