(465h) Colloidal Stability and Interparticle Interactions of Proppant Dispersed in pH-Responsive, Supramolecular Hydraulic Fracturing Fluids

Liu, S., Texas A&M University
Akbulut, M., Texas A&M University
The extraction of shale gas typically involves the injection of highly pressurized fluids into shale formations to create cracks and fractures. Proppant (e.g., sand, alumina, or zirconia) carried by the fracking fluid is pumped into the cracks and fractures to hold them open when the hydraulic pressure is removed from the well. After forcefully injecting proppant into fissures and pulling water back, natural gas will flow more freely towards to the well. One of the most important components of a fracking fluid is the viscosity modifying agent, which prevents settling and non-homogenous dispersion of proppant and provide a strong driving force on proppant to follow the fluid into cracks, fractures, and fissures. This presentation will elaborate on the potential use of a novel supramolecular dispersion made from the self-assembly of an amino amide and maleic acid with highly adjustable, reversible viscosity behavior in hydraulic fracturing. In addition, the rheology and interfacial phenomena (such as colloidal stability, particle settling, and particle-particle interactions) of the system involving such supramolecular assemblies and proppant will be discussed.