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QUANTITATIVESAMPLEDESCRIPTIONSUSINGFTIR
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andDRIFTS

INFRAREDQUANTITATIVESAMPLEDESCRIPTIONS
Thetypicalsampledescriptionlogisaqualitativedescriptionoftherocksamples
recoveredfromthemudsystemduringthedrillingoperationsatawellsiteorfrom
conventionalorsidewallcorestakenoverspecificintervalsinthewell.Semi
quantitativeanalysiscanbedoneusingamicroscopeandeyeballestimatesofthe
quantitiesofeachmineralpresent.Thisisalittleimprecisebutmayresolvesome
issues.

XRaydiffractionspectroscopy(XRD)isanotherquantitativemethodfordescription
ofthemineralogyofcuttingsorcoresamples.

Infraredspectroscopyisasomewhatnewertechnology.Infraredanalysisof
washedsamplescanresolvemostminerals,includingclaysandorganics,intoaquantitativebreakdown.Itcanbe
performedatthewellsite,aspartoftheothersampledescriptionandgasloggingprocess(measurementswhiledrilling)
orinalaboratoryafterdrillingthewell.

Therearetwotypesofinfraredspectroscopy.Themostcommonistransmission,orabsorption,infraredspectroscopy,
inwhichthespectraareinvertedtoamineralassemblagebyaFourierTransformalgorithm,commonlyabbreviatedas
FTIR.AnotherindependentmethodisdiffusereflectioninfraredFourierTransformspectroscopy,betterknownasDRIFTS.
DRIFTSisnewer,faster,andcheaperthanconventionalFTIR.Althoughthetransmissionandreflectionspectraarequite
differentinappearance,bothtechniquesgiveverysimilarresults.

Samplesfromcorescanalsobeused.Smallsamples(0.5to1.0grams)arecrushedandplacedintheFTIRapparatus,
whereIRabsorptionspectrumisscannedwithabroadrangeofinfraredfrequencies.Eachmineral,liquid,andgashasa
uniquespectrum,allowingthesoftwaretoidentifyeachmineralbycomparingtopuremineralspectra.

Multiplescansofthesamesampleareusedtoincreasesignaltonoiseratio.Withthemostrecentdevelopmentofwellsite
instruments,atypicalmeasurementtakestwotothreeminutes.Resultsinweightpercentormassfractionarestoredon
discanddisplayedonrequest.Samplepreparationcantakeafewminutesaswell.

FTIRabsorptionspectraforcalciteandquartzafterbeingprocessedbytheFouriertransformsoftware.Thepeaksaredue
tocovalentbondsinthemoleculesandgiveauniquepatternforeachmineral.Therelativeamplitudesofpeakscompared
topuremineralstandardsareusedtoestimatethequantityofeachmineralpresentinamixture.(image:AnaMin)

FTIRLOGEXAMPLES
AlogofresultsversusdepthisconstructedbytheFTIRsoftwarepackageandcanaugmenttheconventionalsamplelog
orstandaloneforcomparisontowirelineorcomputedloganalysisresults.

AnFTIRquantitativesamplelog,measuredinweightpercent,withinterpretedlithologydescription(imagescourtesyof
AnaMin)


TabularlistingofFTIRquantitativemineralogy,measuredinweightpercent,canbeloadedintopetrophysicalanalysis
softwareinamannersimilartocoreanalysisorXRDdata,toassistincalibratinganalysisresults.Notetheavailabilityof
TOCdatainthisexample.

Thetechniqueisquitenewandnotyetwidelyusedatthewellsite.Ithasapplicationsinconventionalandunconventional
reservoirs,includingshalegas,tightoil,andcoalbedmethane.Itcanprovideaquantitativeestimateoftotalorganic
carbon(TOC)andquantitativemineralogyandclayvolumewithoutwaitingtotransportandanalyzesamplesinthe
laboratory.Sinceitisanearrealtimemeasurement,itcanassistingeosteeringofhorizontalordeviatedwells.

DRIFTSLOGEXAMPLES
Theexamplebelowisfrom"KerogenContentandMaturity,Mineralogy,andClayTypingfromDRIFTSAnalysisofCuttings
orCores",M.Heronetal,Petrophysics,Oct2014.

DRIFTSanalysisofcoresamplesfromtheMontneyformationinAlberta.Notethatclaycontentaveragesabout30%by
weight,quartzcarbonateratioisabout50:50,andcarbonateismostlydolomite(withminorcalciterichlayers).Kerogenis
about3%.Althoughpyriteweightfractionusuallyisinthe3to8%rangeinthisinterval,noneisshowninthisexample.

DRIFTSexamplefromcuttingsinMarcellusShale.Clayquartzratioisnear50:50withlittlecarbonate.Kerogenruns4to
12%byweight.Colourcodessameaspreviousexample.

ComparisonofDRIFTSandFTIRmethodsonthesamecoresamplesfromtheMontneyexampleshownearlier.


THEINFRAREDSPECTRUM
InfraredradiationIsaformofelectromagneticradiationwithfrequenciesbetweenthosevisibletohumansandthose
familiarasradiowaves.Ultraviolet,Xrays,andgammaraysareathigherfrequencies.

Theradiationspectrumshowstheinfraredtothelowerfrequencysideofthevisiblelightregion.Ultraviolet,Xray,and
gammaraysareonthehighfrequencysideofthevisiblespectrum.

Somedefinitionsareinorder:
1:Wavelength=10^4/WaveNumber(microns)
2:WaveNumber=10^4/Frequency((reciprocalcentimeterscm^1)
3:Wavelength=2.9979*10^4/Frequency(meters)

Infrequencyterms,1cm^1=2.9979*10^9=30Ghz.

Infraredenergyobeysthesamelawsoftransmission,reflection,andabsorptionasdoesvisiblelight.Thefrequencies
absorbedandreflectedbyeachsubstancehaveauniquefrequencyspectrumorsignature,whichdependsonthe
molecularstructureofthesubstance.

FTIRspectroscopyreliesondetectionofcovalentbondsormoleculargroupvibrations.Mineralidentificationispossible
becausemineralshavecharacteristicabsorptionbandsinthemidrangeoftheinfrared(4000to400cm1).The
concentrationofamineralinasamplecanbeextractedfromtheFTIRspectrumbecausetheabsorbanceofthemixtureis
proportionaltotheconcentrationofeachmineral.ThisisgivenbyBeersLaw:
4:A=SUM(Cj*Ej*L)

Where:
A=absorbanceofamineralmixtureatagivenwavenumber
Ej=absorbtivityofcomponentj
L=theabsorptionpathlength(pelletthickness)
Cjistheconcentrationofcomponentj.

AllmulticomponentanalysesarebasedonBeerslaw,andtheabsorbanceataspecificwavenumberisthesumofthe
absorbanceofallsamplecomponentsthatabsorbatthatwavenumber.Sincethespectrumcoversawiderangeof
wavenumbers,anonnegativeleastsquaressolutiontotheCjconcentrationvaluesispossible.

HOWFTIRREALLYWORKS
Source:Wikipedia

Thegoalofanyabsorptionspectroscopyistomeasurehowwellasampleabsorbslightateachwavelength.Themost
straightforwardwaytodothis,the"dispersivespectroscopy"technique,istoshineamonochromaticlightbeamata
sample,measurehowmuchofthelightisabsorbed,andrepeatforeachdifferentwavelength.

Fouriertransformspectroscopyisalessintuitivewaytoobtainthesameinformation.Ratherthanshininga
monochromaticbeamoflightatthesample,thistechniqueshinesabeamcontainingmanyfrequenciesoflightatonce,
andmeasureshowmuchofthatbeamisabsorbedbythesample.Next,thebeamismodifiedtocontainadifferent
combinationoffrequencies,givingaseconddatapoint.Thisprocessisrepeatedmanytimes.Afterwards,acomputer
takesallthesedataandworksbackwardstoinferwhattheabsorptionisateachwavelength.

Thebeamdescribedaboveisgeneratedbystartingwithabroadbandlightsource,onecontainingthefullspectrumof
wavelengthstobemeasured.ThelightshinesintoaMichelsoninterferometer,acertainconfigurationofmirrors,oneof
whichismovedbyamotor.Asthismirrormoves,eachwavelengthoflightinthebeamisperiodicallyblocked,
transmitted,blocked,transmitted,bytheinterferometer,duetowaveinterference.Differentwavelengthsaremodulatedat
differentrates,sothatateachmoment,thebeamcomingoutoftheinterferometerhasadifferentspectrum.Therawdata
issometimescalledan"interferogram".

Asmentioned,computerprocessingisrequiredtoturntherawdata(lightabsorptionforeachmirrorposition)intothe
desiredresult(lightabsorptionforeachwavelength).Theprocessingrequiredturnsouttobeacommonalgorithmcalled
theFouriertransform.Theinterferogrambelongsinthelengthdomain.Fouriertransforminvertsthedimension,sothe
transformoftheinterferogrambelongsinthereciprocallengthdomain,thatisthewavenumberdomain.(endofWiki
extract)

OncetheFTIRspectrumhasbeenobtained,thepeaksandvalleysonthewavenumbergraphcanbecomparedto
standardgraphsforpuremineralsrecordedinacatalog.Byidentifyingparticularpeaks,themineralspresentcanbe
identified.Theamplitudesofthepeaksareusedtoestimatethequantityofeachmineral.Hardwaresuppliershavecreated
proprietarysoftwarethatcanquicklycomparethousandsofpossiblecombinationstofindamatchtothemeasured
spectrum.Thetaskissimplifiedbychoosinganappropriatemineral"package"thatbestrepresentstherocksequence,
thusreducingthenumberofcomparisonsrequired.Thatmineralpackagecontainsthespectraforafewtoafewdozen
pureminerals.

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