Now showing items 41-60 of 229

    • Rich gas injection pilot: an enhanced oil recovery approach applied to an unconventional reservoir in the Bakken petroleum system

      Zerpa, Luis E.; Servin, Luis Miguel; Yin, Xiaolong; Dean, Elio (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Economic production from shale plays focuses on hydraulic fracture techniques and well spacing optimization and yet the recovery factor ranges from 7 – 10 %. Shale plays produce large quantities of ethane and liquid rich hydrocarbon gases. Ethane, like CO2, has a low minimum miscibility pressure, has good solubility in oil, is better at mobilizing higher molecular weight hydrocarbons, and is a good viscosity reducer. The purpose of this study is to determine the technological and economic factors that could affect a rich natural gas injection pilot. The design of the study is fivefold: 1) build a dual-porosity reservoir model of the Middle Bakken (MB) formation in the West Nesson section of the Williston Basin; 2) assess the pre-injection technological factors that may contribute to difficulties or success of the pilot; 3) determine surveillance techniques that will add value and understanding to post-injection studies; 4) inject rich natural gas at different pressures and compositions into the stimulated reservoir volume of one well, to determine the incremental production of oil and/or compositional change (modified huff and puff); and 5) compare the modeling results to better understand which scenarios (injection pressure, injection composition, or both) create the best value for designing a rich natural gas injection project. This study is part of a pilot that is currently underway in the West Nesson section of the Williston Basin. The study area is a 1,280 acre drill site unit (DSU), which has 11 horizontal wells and initial production dating back to August 2013. The DSU is a low permeability, fractured reservoir containing liquid-rich hydrocarbons in the Middle Bakken (MB) and Three Forks (TF) formations. The geologic static model was built using contour maps, multiple core analysis, NMR, rock mechanics and standard well logs. I used the static geologic model to create a 3D reservoir model using petrophysical, core, PVT, and completions data. I created an equation of state (EOS) model using PVT, which was used to develop the 7-lumped component compositional model in CMG. History matching was performed in two sets, first the total fluid to obtain a reasonable material balance match, followed by matching oil, gas, and water phases. First, the study evaluated how matrix/fracture permeability, fracture porosity, and hydraulic fracture permeability impact production. The vertical to horizontal permeability ratio indicates how matrix/fracture water saturation impacts phase history matching. Fracture porosity is a significant sink for fracture to matrix flow in numerical simulation. Individual grid block size and calculated properties impacts oil recovery rate and historical saturations within the fracture system. Next, the study evaluated how injection/production cycles applied to a one well SRV affected incremental oil and cumulative production. Five cases varying pressure and composition were compared to a base case to determine the incremental oil increase or decrease. The pressure cases showed how increasing pressure increases the post injection cycle incremental oil and cumulative production. Changing the composition verified that injecting high quantities of methane decrease the incremental oil, whereas as injecting ethane and liquid rich hydrocarbons increased the incremental oil and cumulative production. Minimum miscibility pressure, hydrocarbon solubility in oil, and viscosity reduction of injectant are key properties needed to release residual oil within the matrix and increase the recovery factor. Finally, the study evaluated how low capital exposure paired with abundant quantities of liquid rich hydrocarbons can be effectively used to increase recovery factor and ultimately provide a high return on investment.
    • Efficiency optimization of a HPGe clover array for implantation decay experiments at FRIB

      Leach, Kyle; Grover, Hannah N.; Shafer, Jenifer C.; Sarazin, Frederic (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      The Facility for Rare Isotope Beams is a new state-of-the-art facility being built at Michigan State University in order to better understand the the fundamental building blocks of the universe. The decay station group hopes to combine a clover style gamma ray detector array with a small, planar HPGe detector to study some of the most exotic nuclei. This project focused on ensuring that this combination would maintain or improve the photon efficiency of a clover style array on its own, as well as optimizing the size of the planar HPGe detectors in the center of the array configuration. The results from simulations done in Geant4 show that the efficiency of this combination of detectors is higher than just a clover array, and even significantly high for low energy gamma rays. In addition, the optimum radius of the planar HPGe detectors is 3.5 cm when considering both the cost and efficiency for the total configuration.
    • Seismotectonics of Turkey and Iran from calibrated earthquake relocations

      Nissen, Edwin; Bergman, Eric; Karasözen, Ezgi; Dagdelen, Kadri; Bozdag, Ebru; Kuiper, Yvette D.; Wald, David J. (David Jay); Benz, Harley (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Uncertainties in earthquake hypocenter locations, which are counted in tens-of-kilometers in most regions of the world, are a serious limitation to seismotectonic studies. For example, they preclude individual events from being confidently attributed with mapped surface faults, complicate the study of mainshock-aftershock sequences and triggering behavior, and errors in depth are problematic for establishing the mechanical and rheological properties of the crust. These errors mostly arise from unknown Earth velocity structure. Well-established relative multiple-earthquake relocation techniques help eliminate these errors, but it remains challenging to achieve minimally biased absolute ('calibrated') locations. In this thesis, I use an advanced multiple-earthquake relocation technique that utilizes calibration of discrete clusters of earthquakes (100s of events over spatial scales <100 km) by exploiting near source data, aftershock deployments and InSAR observations. The three body chapters consist of independent journal manuscripts connected by this common theme. The final chapter presents ongoing work on implementing these trusted, calibrated locations as prior constraints to relocate a much larger dataset over a wider region (1000s of events across ~1000 km) using Bayesian methods. Our results show how calibrated earthquake locations can be employed to transform our understanding of the kinematics of faulting in Iran and Turkey, and also to improve interpretations of the associated seismic hazard. Both regions have a long history of very destructive earthquakes, and nearly one third of the deadliest earthquakes since 1900 have occurred within our study area. The Zagros mountains, which are the focus of Chapter 4, are of huge economic, social and cultural importance to Iran, containing vast oil and gas reserves, its two major nuclear reactors, six UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and several large cities. Therefore, our results are of clear interest in both countries, which also helped to develop new international collaborations with local seismologists. Finally, our new two-tiered relocation procedure, once fully developed, can be transferable to other regions requiring more precise epicentral locations.
    • Role of flashing in the formation of high-grade, low-sulfidation epithermal deposits: a case study from the Omu Camp in Hokkaido, Japan, The

      Monecke, Thomas; Zeeck, Lauren R.; Pfaff, Katharina; Reynolds, T. James; Hennigh, Quinton Todd (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      The Miocene low-sulfidation epithermal Hokuryu and Omui deposits of the Omu camp in northeastern Hokkaido, Japan, are small past-producers of high-grade Au and Ag ores. The quartz textures and distribution of ore minerals within vein samples were studied to identify the processes that resulted in the bonanza-grade precious metal enrichment in these deposits. Correlative microscopy involving optical microscopy, cathodoluminescence microscopy, and scanning electron microscopy was employed. The research shows that vein quartz exhibits a wide range of textures that represent primary growth patterns. In addition, textures indicative of recrystallization of silica precursor phases and replacement of other vein minerals were recognized. In the high-grade vein samples, which are crustiform or brecciated in hand specimen, ore minerals almost exclusively occur within distinct dark gray to black quartz bands. These bands alternate with barren, white to light gray quartz suggesting that ore deposition was episodic. The bands hosting the ore are colloform and composed of mosaic quartz. High-magnification microscopy reveals the presence of densely packed relic microspheres providing evidence that the mosaic quartz formed through recrystallization of a non-crystalline silica precursor phase. The ore minerals occur interstitially to the densely packed microspheres indicating that ore deposition was contemporaneous to the agglomeration of the microspheres. These colloform bands with relic microsphere textures are interpreted to have formed through rapid silica and ore mineral deposition within the veins at high temperatures, presumably involving temporary flashing of the hydrothermal system. Limited fluid inclusion data suggests that silica deposition occurred at a temperature of over 245-250°C implying that flashing occurred to a depth of over 400 m below the paleosurface. The ore-hosting colloform bands composed of agglomerated microspheres are texturally distinct from barren, colloform bands containing fibrous chalcedonic quartz bands formed at lower temperatures. The findings of this study are consistent with models linking the high-grade precious metal enrichment in low-sulfidation epithermal veins to episodic flashing of the hydrothermal system and have significant implications to the design of exploration strategies for bonanza-grade low sulfidation epithermal vein deposits.
    • Quantitative risk modeling of gas hydrate bedding using mechanistic, statistical, and artificial neural network frameworks

      Koh, Carolyn A. (Carolyn Ann); Zerpa, Luis E.; Srivastava, Vishal; Wu, David T.; Carreon, Moises A.; Krebs, Melissa D.; Keinath, Brendon; Greaves, David; Eaton, Mike; Aman, Zachary M. (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Gas hydrates are crystalline compounds comprised of a network of hydrogen bonded water cages that can trap small gas molecules. These compounds are formed at the high pressure and low temperature conditions typically found in deep-water oil and gas pipelines. Gas hydrate formation in deep-water pipelines can lead to blockages, which can result in major environmental, safety, and economic hazards. This thesis focused on mitigating the formation of hydrate plugs in oil and gas pipelines. Specifically, the primary goal of this thesis work was to improve the understanding of hydrate bedding transitions by using three different approaches: mechanistic, statistical and machine learning (artificial neural networks, ANN). With the mechanistic approach, this thesis provided new insights into the important interconnection between partial water dispersion, agglomeration and hydrate bedding. This was achieved by developing a quantitative bedding framework that could consider water dispersion and agglomeration. A proposed model for the dispersion of water droplets in continuous oil phase systems included the prediction of the type and extent of water dispersion in a partially dispersed system; available literature models predicted the dispersion type (fully versus partially dispersed). In the statistical approach, 125 flowloop tests with approximately 5000 datapoints were analyzed and risk maps were generated. The analysis showed that linear regression models could be inadequate in predicting the hydrate plugging transitions in the flowloop. As an alternative, two initial Artificial Neural Network (ANN) based models (to account for nonlinear behavior of plugging transitions) were developed to quantify hydrate plugging risks. Mechanistic and ANN models developed during this thesis work could potentially aid in the development of an effective hydrate management strategy. Using the mechanistic approach, flowloop experiments performed using different oils indicated that hydrate agglomeration was intrinsically coupled to bedding. Additionally, large water droplets and partial water dispersion led to an early onset of bedding. Based on these two findings, a conceptual bedding framework was proposed by considering the effect of water dispersion and agglomeration. The new framework used a transient hydrate agglomeration model to generate a distribution of hydrate agglomerates as a function of droplet size distribution, particle cohesion force, shear and hydrate formation rate. The new mechanistic bedding framework predicted the onset of bedding with reasonable accuracy (coefficient of determination = 89%) for experiments performed at the ExxonMobil flowloop facility from 2014-16. Flowloop experiments showed that pressure drop due to fluid flow increased significantly after a certain hydrate concentration, defined as the plugging transition, which was considered a trigger point leading to hydrate bedding and plugging. Using the statistical approach, the flowloop hydrate plugging transitions were analyzed empirically using the pressure drop, particle size, mass flow rate and gamma-ray density measurements. A statistical approach was undertaken to determine the plugging transition from previous 125 flowloop tests, performed under various operating conditions. Data analyses suggested that the plugging transition could serve as a precursor to hydrate bedding. Tests with the King Ranch Condensate took significantly shorter times and lower hydrate fractions to reach the plugging transition criteria compared to the crude oil (with natural surfactants). Data analyses also suggested that low water cut, high mixture velocity, low Gas-Oil Ratio (GOR), and the injection of anti-agglomerants (AAs) can increase the plugging transition values and lead to safer hydrate transportation. It was observed that statistical linear regression models had limited accuracy in prdicting plugging transitions. In the third approach to overcome the limitations of the previous statistical approach for predicting the plugging transitions, two Artificial Neural Network (ANN) based models were proposed to quantify the plugging transitions in the subsea flowlines. The ANN based models were able to estimate the relative pressure drop and a binary class of failure to determine the “plug” or “no plug” case due to increasing hydrate concentrations in the flowloops. The ANN classification model also resulted in superior prediction accuracies as compared to the other classification models (Logistic Regression, Decision Tree, Support Vector Machine, and K-Nearest Neighbor). It was suggested that artificial neural network could be potentially useful as one of the tools for a hydrate management solution. During this thesis work, it was observed that the three approaches had their own unique advantages and disadvantages. The mechanistic risk model was able to explain the underlying physics involved in the dispersion, agglomeration (population balance model, PBM) and bedding processes. The mechanistic model was computationally intensive, as it required several numerical iterations while solving the differential equations with the agglomeration and breakage kernels. The statistical plugging risk model based on multiple linear regression had less complexity and was easy to interpret but gave poor predictability. The artificial neural network based risk models showed greater accuracy in predicting the plugging transitions, but had complex network architecture and were difficult to interpret. Nevertheless, given the complexity of hydrate particle transportability, these multiple approaches can contribute to an improved understanding and ultimate implementation of an effective hydrate management strategy.
    • Basic research into performance improvements in plastic scintillator materials for homeland security

      Greife, Uwe; Mahl, Adam Creveling; Sarazin, Frederic; Gray, Frederick; Wiencke, Lawrence (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Plastic scintillators are currently deployed around the world in first line radiation detectors for international borders, sensitive nuclear sites, national and academic lab settings. These scintillators are simple in their composition and their function, being composed of a common polymer matrix which has been doped with a small percentage of fluorescent molecules. This product fluoresces when radiation is present and incident on the plastic. This fluorescence is then detected by photodetectors which are coupled to the plastic. Currently, these detector systems are unable to provide any spectroscopic or particle identification information, and therefore can only be used for initial screening purposes. Further information about the radiation after a positive response is gleaned by using additional detector systems (e.g. sodium iodide crystals and then followed by HPGE detectors). In this dissertation, two broad basic research approaches were explored to achieve a better understanding of these systems with the goal of enhancing them for better radiation detection capabilities. The first approach involved enhancing the plastic scintillators' sensitivity to both fast and thermal neutrons, allowing for particle identification and a reduction in false positive detections of naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM). This was achieved via admixture of several different boron containing materials into the plastic scintillator's basic formulation, allowing for both thermalization of a fast neutron spectrum via the (n,p) scattering reaction in the hydrogenous bulk matrix, and then a coincident signal of thermal neutron capture on the highly neutron sensitive 10B isotope. This effect was further enhanced by incorporating a recently identified method of inducing PSD capabilities into plastic scintillators, an analysis that has traditionally only been able to be performed with liquid organic scintillators or certain crystalline scintillators. Synthesized enriched 10B molecules compatible with common polymer matrices and liquid scintillator solvents were developed, a well studied, a commonly available and cheap boron containing chemical precursor was identified which can be quickly and easily admixed into basic scintillator formulations, and finally, a family of aromatic, boron containing molecules which can be synthesized in both 10B enriched or natural boron variants has been identified and studied for effective use in plastic scintillators. The second broad approach of research was aimed at furthering the understanding of the scintillation process and specifically testing the current theory of why pulse shape discrimination (PSD) capabilities occur. This was examined by altering several different families of fluorescent dopants, extensively cataloging both the dopant properties and the properties of the final scintillator plastic they produced. The results from these experiments will be useful to guide future research towards the ability of designing specific scintillator properties.
    • Loading and release of large protein molecules and separation of lanthanides using mesoporous materials

      Trewyn, Brian; Deodhar, Gauri V.; Shafer, Jenifer C.; Posewitz, Matthew C.; Krebs, Melissa D. (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Protein therapeutics are promising candidates for disease treatment due to their high specificity and minimal adverse side effects; however, targeted protein delivery to specific sites has proven challenging. Mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSN) have demonstrated to be ideal candidates for this application, given their high loading capacity, biocompatibility, and ability to protect host molecules from degradation. These materials exhibit tunable pore sizes, shapes and volumes, and surfaces which can be easily functionalized. This serves to control the movement of molecules in and out of the pores, thus entrapping guest molecules until a specific stimulus triggers release. The benefits of using MSN as protein therapeutic carriers will be covered, demonstrating that there is great diversity in the ways MSN can be used to service proteins. Methods for controlling the physical dimensions of pores via synthetic conditions, applications of therapeutic protein loaded MSN materials in cancer therapies, delivering protein loaded MSN materials to plant cells using biolistic methods, and common stimuli-responsive functionalities will be discussed. New and exciting strategies for controlled release of proteins will also be covered. Mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSN) with enlarged pores were prepared and characterized, and reversibly dissociated subunits of large protein molecules such Concanavalin A were entrapped in the mesopores, as shown by multiple biochemical and material characterizations. When loaded in the MSN, we demonstrated protein stability from proteases and, upon release, the subunits re-associated into active proteins. We have demonstrated a versatile and facile method to load homomeric proteins into MSN with potential applications in enhancing the delivery of large therapeutic proteins. Similarly dissociated Yeast alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) can be loaded into MSN and regain activity upon release. This shows our method can be extended to multi-subunit enzymes as well as proteins. Adjacent lanthanides are among the most challenging elements to separate, to the extent that current separations materials would benefit from transformative improvement. Ordered mesoporous carbon (OMC) materials are excellent candidates, owing to their small mesh size and uniform morphology. Herein, two OMC materials were physisorbed with bis-(2-ethylhexyl) phosphoric acid (HDEHP) and the relationships between surface areas, pore sizes, and recovery performance were explored using a 152/154Eu radiotracer. The HDEHP-OMC materials displayed higher distribution coefficients and loading capacities than current state-of-the-art materials.
    • Investigation on foam stability and foam-conditioned soil properties under pressure in EPB TBM tunneling

      Mooney, Michael A.; Wu, Yuanli; Tilton, Nils; Illangasekare, T. H.; Hedayat, Ahmadreza (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Proper soil conditioning is very important in earth pressure balanced (EPB) tunneling as it improves face stability and tunnel boring machine (TBM) performance. Foam is one of the most commonly used soil conditioning agents to modify the excavated soil properties. A critical characteristic of foam-conditioned soil is its stability, i.e., the ability to maintain the engineering properties throughout the residency time (30-90 min) in the mixing chamber. It is very important to understand the fundamentals of foam stability and foam-conditioned soil properties. This thesis examines foam stability under pressure through a novel foam generation – pressure chamber – foam capture testing system. A series of foam experiments was performed to examine the physical phenomenon of foam degradation and time-dependent foam properties under pressure. Test results suggest that liquid loss is not an effective indicator for characterizing foam stability, while foam volume loss is a more appropriate measure of foam stability. Results also reveal that foam liquid drainage is significantly retarded at higher chamber pressure. For the stability of foam-conditioned under pressure, a comprehensive suite of experiments was conducted for foam-conditioned soil to investigate the fundamentals of foam-soil interaction and engineering properties of foam-conditioned soil. A foam-soil capture device was used to capture bubble-grain images at a microscale under pressure. A pressurized testing chamber (PTC) was used to examine the stability of the mechanical properties of foam-conditioned soil. Test results reveal that changes in bubble size distribution for foam in foam-soil mixtures are much less than foam itself, indicating that soil particles help stabilize foam bubbles. Test results present that the engineering properties of foam-conditioned soil are relatively stable over 60 min. This thesis also investigates the mechanisms of foam-soil separation in the EPB mixing chamber through a series of soil conditioning tests. Parameters including molding water content wo, initial foam injection ratio FIRo, and fines content are varied to examine capacity for foam and foam-soil separation. Test results suggest that there is more expelled foam as molding water content and initial foam injection ratio increase. Test results also indicate that fines content increases the soil’s capacity for foam and water. In addition, results show that agitation and cyclic loading-unloading of pressure can induce foam-soil separation in conditioned soil.
    • Image-domain wavefield tomography in transversely isotropic media

      TSvankin, I. D.; Li, Vladimir; Alkhalifah, Tariq; Sava, Paul C.; Tura, Ali; Tenorio, Luis; Tutuncu, Azra (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Image-domain tomography (IDT) operates with seismic reflection data and optimizes the background velocity model by improving the quality of image gathers obtained by prestack depth migration. In this thesis, I develop an acoustic wave-equation-based IDT algorithm for reconstructing transversely isotropic (TI) models from P-wave reflections. Parameter estimation is carried out by focusing energy in extended images, which are produced by reverse-time migration (RTM) and contain information about the angle-dependent illumination of the subsurface. First, I study the sensitivity of energy focusing in the extended domain to the parameters of VTI (TI with a vertical symmetry axis) media. Analysis of horizontal and dipping events shows that the most influential parameter is the zero-dip NMO velocity (Vnmo), whereas the contribution of the anellipticity parameter η increases with reflector dip. Energy focusing is sensitive only to the lateral variation of Thomsen’s parameter δ. These conclusions, consistent with the properties of time-domain reflection moveout, help develop an effective strategy for estimating the parameters Vnmo, δ, and η. Using both the differential and integral wave-equation operators for acoustic VTI media, I apply the adjoint-state method to derive the inversion gradients for image- and data-domain tomography. The data-domain gradients make it possible to incorporate vertical seismic profiling (VSP) data, which provide important constraints for anisotropic model updating, into the objective function. The gradients computed with the integral wave-equation operator are free of the unphysical shear-wave modes produced by differential wave-equation solutions. However, robust estimation of the VTI parameters (especially the coefficient η) requires mitigating illumination and aperture-truncation artifacts in RTM extended images. I demonstrate that these artifacts can be efficiently suppressed via least-squares RTM (LSRTM) preconditioned with nonstationary matching filters. The integral wave-equation operator and adjoint-state gradients allow me to develop a multistage IDT algorithm for VTI media. Image-guided smoothing of the inversion gradients of the parameters Vnmo and η helps ensure convergence towards geologically plausible solutions. The δ-field is tightly constrained by image-guided interpolation between available boreholes. A test on elastic data for the synthetic Marmousi-II model confirms that robust estimation of the VTI parameters is possible even for substantially distorted initial models. Application of the algorithm to a line from a 3D ocean-bottom node data set acquired in the Gulf of Mexico produces a refined η-field and improves the focusing of the LSRTM image. Finally, the IDT methodology is generalized for TI media with a tilted symmtry axis (TTI). I derive the P-wave separable dispersion relation for strongly anelliptic TTI models and implement the corresponding wave-equation operator, which is then employed to obtain the inversion gradient. A synthetic test for a dipping homogeneous TTI layer demonstrates that neglecting the symmetry- axis tilt can distort estimation of the other medium parameters. Analysis of the extended LSRTM images shows that, if the symmetry axis is orthogonal to the reflector, the coefficient δ contributes to focusing of dipping events, whereas the parameter η produces only weak linear defocusing regardless of reflector dip. To increase the robustness of IDT for TTI media, the image-focusing objective function is combined with a model-shaping term that contains borehole information about δ. A test on the BP benchmark TTI model shows that the algorithm can update the background Vnmo-, δ-, and η-fields even for a strongly distorted initial velocity field.
    • Hydrothermal evolution of Au-bearing pyrite-quartz veins and their association to base metal veins in Central City, Colorado

      Gysi, Alexander; Alford, Lee; Monecke, Thomas; Kuiper, Yvette D. (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      The Central City district played a major role in the early settlement and prosperity of Colorado, providing a major resource of Au, Ag, Cu, Pb, and Zn in the 19th century totaling more than $100 million during the time of production. Gold mineralization at Central City occurs in two main vein types: pyrite-quartz and base metal veins, which have been related to Tertiary intrusives. These veins occur in concentric zones with pyrite-quartz veins in the central zone of the district and base metal veins in the peripheral zone of the district. Although the broad vein distribution is well understood from previous studies, the evolution of the Central City district remains unclear, particularly when and how Au is introduced in the system. The goal of the study was to determine the hydrothermal evolution between the two major vein types, and their association to Au. This research combines textural, mineralogical and geochemical observations at the field and thin section scales across the district utilizing field emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM), automated mineralogy (AM), electron microprobe analysis (EMPA), optical cathodoluminescence (CL), and laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) analysis. We have identified three significant alterations, four vein types, five types of pyrite, and two stages of mineralization: the pyrite stage and the base metal stage. These observations were used to construct a detailed paragenesis of both the pyrite and base metal stages of mineralization, which has allowed us to interpret the evolution of hydrothermal fluids in this district and under which conditions Au was introduced into the system. Fluids early in the pyrite stage were magmatic in origin with pyrite enriched in Ni and Co and related to Mo-bearing veins and K-feldspar alteration, followed by the formation of pyrite-quartz veins and phyllic alteration. Fluids of the base metal stage transition from Cu-Zn-(Pb) mineralizing chalcopyrite, sphalerite, and galena to Cu-Sb-As-(Au) mineralizing tetrahedrite and enargite and then to Pb-Zn-(Ag) mineralizing late base metal veins with argillic alteration. We conclude that Au was primarily introduced in the base metal stage of mineralization, together with the sulfosalts, and it occurs dominantly as electrum.
    • Modeling climate change impacts to Rocky Mountain headwater hydrology

      Maxwell, Reed M.; Foster, Lauren; Singha, Kamini; Fogg, Graham E.; Mitcham, Carl (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Rocky Mountain headwater catchments provide 85% of Colorado River streamflow and also feed the large Arkansas and Platte River basins. The continued growth of cities from California to Arkansas depends on reliable export from these topographically complex basins. Despite consensus that high-elevation headwaters are more sensitive to climate warming, most models used to predict climate impacts to downstream basins are known to perform poorly in these regions. Here we use an integrated model to better understand the main hydrological drivers of hydrology that are affected by increases in temperature in mountain regions- shifts from snow to rain and increases in energy, finding that energy budget changes dominate impacts to streamflow export. We present a new method to develop scale-effective parameterizations of hydraulic conductivity in topographically complex regions for use in integrated modeling applications that are limited by computational demand. Finally, we compare climate impact predictions across modeling resolutions to understand the limitations of coarse-resolution, simplified models to predict streamflow export from Rocky Mountain headwaters. Our results highlight the importance of idealized model experiments and model development to understand headwater hydrology in a future climate. Furthermore, they suggest that the models used currently may underestimate climate-induced reductions to streamflow generated in the Rocky Mountains.
    • Study on the use of cellular cofferdam for permanent hydropower use

      Gutierrez, Marte; Khademian, Soheyl; Hedayat, Ahmadreza; Pei, Shiling (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Cellular cofferdams are temporary constructions consisting of interlocking steel-sheet piling driven as a series of interconnecting cells. Cellular cofferdams have been employed mainly as provisional “water exclusion devices” for water diversion projects to permit dry construction of dams, locks, bridge footings and piers, hydroelectric power plants, and other in-water structures. This dissertation presents the results of a comprehensive study on the potential use of cellular cofferdams as basis for the design and construction of water retaining structures to sustainably and cost-effectively harness hydropower. Cellular cofferdams have been very rarely utilized as the main permanent structure for hydropower dams. Consequently, design and construction requirements for cellular cofferdams are less stringent than for hydropower dams. To make cellular cofferdams suitable for permanent hydropower use, one design concept that utilizes cellular cofferdams as the main or core element of the water-retaining dam structure is proposed. One particular key design concept is the so-called “dry construction technique” in which the granular fill in cofferdam cells and the downstream berm are permanently kept dry in contrast to the wet construction technique for temporary use of cellular cofferdams. The viability of the proposed permanent cellular cofferdam design concept for the construction and operation is demonstrated using well-established structural and geotechnical design procedures and computational modeling. Environmental and economic impacts of the proposed cellular cofferdam-based design are studied in comparison to traditional hydropower dam constructions. The improved performance of the proposed design concept, particularly in combination with the dry construction technique, shows cellular cofferdams have the potential to be used as basis for the construction of permanent hydropower dam structures that are versatile, with less impact on the environment, and will cost less to build than conventional hydropower dams.
    • Influence of microstructure on membrane distillation: high-resolution 3D reconstructions for analysis of pore-scale phenomena, The

      DeCaluwe, Steven C.; Tilton, Nils; Gilleon, Spencer L.; Porter, Jason M.; Vanneste, Johan (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      The demand for clean water has seen a rapid increase in the last decade; increasing the need for technological advancement in producing potable drinking water. Membrane distillation (MD) is an emerging approach for producing fresh water via desalinating high-concentration brines, brackish waters, produced waters, and seawater. Though attracting considerable attention, several technological barriers must be solved for MD to see wide industrial application. The underlying mechanisms for heat and mass transfer through MD membranes remains poorly understood. This is largely due to the knowledge gap between continuum-level transport models and MD membrane microstructure. Also, MD membranes are typically designed for other applications such as a reverse osmosis (RO) and fuel cell technology. Being able to characterize MD membrane microstructure can lead to enhanced transport modeling and new design criteria for MD specific membrane production. Focused ion beam scanning electron microscopy (FIB-SEM) technology was implemented as a means for analyzing MD membrane microstructure and creating digital 3D membrane reconstructions. To make FIB-SEM analysis viable, a membrane mounting, infiltration, and preparation protocol was developed. The FIB-SEM “Slice and View” procedure was used to collect 2D SEM images that were serially stacked to produce a 3D reconstruction of membrane pore networks. With the 3D reconstruction, important microstructural parameters such as porosity, pore size, solid fiber size, and tortuosity factor were extracted using the reconstruction software and the MATLAB application, TauFactor. Results showed that FIB-SEM is able to resolve major structural features within the membrane pore network but has difficulty in resolving thin, connecting fibers causing discrepancies between the microstructural parameters given by the manufacturer. This is likely due to the membranes soft polymer material being compromised under ion and electron beams conditions utilized by FIB-SEM. However, obtaining high-resolution 3D reconstructions can lead to direct CFD analysis and “numerical experiments” to validate state-of-the-art transport models used for MD systems. 1D transport models such as Dusty Gas Model (DGM) and a simple Fickian diffusion model have been implemented to better understand underlying MD transport mechanisms and to determine their validity for simulating MD membrane transport. Literature supports DGM for simulating transport through porous media but has not been thoroughly validated for materials with high porosity (> 60%), which is the case for MD membranes. Using and modifying these models allows for an understanding about which microstructural parameters play an important role in predicting flux. Membranes can have identical properties such as membrane thickness, pore radius, and porosity but can yield vastly different experimental flux measurements. Simulations using both models at various feed and permeate flow temperatures and membrane parameters were performed to explore the transport mechanisms of each model and the heat and mass transport occurring at and within the membrane. Temperature, mole fraction, and total pressure profiles were developed to further analyze transport mechanisms and gradients within the membrane microstructure. Simulation results indicate that tortuosity is a limiting factor and an integral parameter for determining flux, meaning two membranes can have similar porosities, thicknesses, and pore sizes, yet two different tortuous networks for water vapor flux transport. Fine-tuning 1D transport models to better represent membrane tortuosity (for both the pore- and solid-space) and direct analysis of the parameter via 3D reconstructions has the ability to provide accurate heat and mass transfer simulation models and influence enhanced design criteria for MD membranes.
    • Fabrication, folding, and propulsion of complex colloidal molecules under applied magnetic fields

      Marr, David W. M.; Wu, Ning; Yang, Tao; Knauss, Daniel M.; Squier, Jeff A.; Neeves, Keith B. (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Directed colloidal assembly under external fields can be used to assemble building blocks into complicated structures that mimic complex molecules or structures found in nature with similar or even advanced functionality. As many biological molecules or structures including protein or flagella have semi-flexible or flexible backbones, permanent yet flexible bonds must be used in assembling structures to achieve comparable functionality such as protein folding or flagella propulsion. While other external fields such as electrical and optical fields can be used for assembly, magnetic fields provide non-invasive and deep penetration into the human body with minimal side effects. In this thesis, therefore we focus on the use of magnetic fields with one-dimensional (1D) magnetic chains and two-dimensional (2D) microwheels used as model assembly systems. We first explore the use of thiol-click reactions to build up flexible bonds between particles and demonstrate the tunability of both binding strength and chain flexibility over a wide range by varying linker length and reaction temperature. Furthermore, an excellent match between experimental results and predictions from classical polymer theory provides confidence that magnetic colloidal chains are excellent macroscopic analogues of synthetic polymers. With increased chain flexibility using large molecular weight hydrophilic polymers, we show that assembled chains can form closed rings or “lassos” in the presence of a planar rotating magnetic field. By adding an additional AC magnetic field along the direction perpendicular to the substrate, lassos can propel in a controllable fashion. We further demonstrate its use for reversible cargo transport and release without need for chemistry for attachment or disengagement. Extending to 2D assembly models, the translation of microwheels on both flat and topographic surfaces was also investigated. In this, we demonstrate that coupling between rotating wheel-shaped bots and nearby walls can be enhanced through surface topography. We show potential utility using gravitational potential energy barriers to separate isomers of different symmetry.
    • Geological and geochemical assessment of the Sharon Springs member of the Pierre Shale and the Niobrara Formation within the Cañon City embayment, south-central Colorado

      Sonnenberg, Stephen A.; Timm, Kira K.; Trudgill, Bruce, 1964-; French, Marsha; Prasad, Manika (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      The Cañon City Embayment, located in south-central Colorado, is one of the oldest and longest oil producing regions in America. Production began in 1862 after the discovery of an oil seep emanating from the Jurassic Morrison Formation. This discovery led to an unsuccessful hunt for the oil spring’s source. The first oil field discovery occurred in 1881, founding the Florence Oil Field. This discovery led to a boom in drilling and production and the further discovery of the Cañon City Field in 1926. Production soon declined, but steady and continuous production occurs to this day. With the upswing caused by the discovery of unconventional petroleum systems, renewed interest led to higher drilling rates within the Cañon City Embayment. As of 2015, more 16.4 MMBO has been produced in the region. Present day production focuses on the fractured Pierre Shale and Niobrara petroleum systems, though exploration is expanding into the Greenhorn Formation. Deposition of both the Late Cretaceous Niobrara Formation and the Sharon Springs Member of the Pierre Shale occurred during transgressive phases within the Western Interior Cretaceous (WIC) Seaway, however significant geochemical and biological differences exist between these formations. Niobrara deposition occurred when warm Gulfian currents dominated the WIC. This resulted in abundant fecal pellet deposition and robust pelagic foraminifers dominated by Heterohelix globulosa, Globigerinelloides ultramicrus, Hedbergella, Gümbelina and two Archaeoglobigerina species. However, the Sharon Springs is primarily argillaceous in composition with lesser amounts of biogenic calcite and silica. Larger foraminifers within the Sharon Springs are primarily arenaceous while foraminifers of the same species found in the Niobrara are dwarfed in the Sharon Springs. Dwarfism of foraminifers species and the presence of dispersed diatoms, which flourish in cold waters, indicate a shift in paleocurrents. Paleogeographic maps of the Middle Campanian show a southerly restriction of the WIC during the time of the southerly Claggett transgression. The influx of cold, southerly waters resulted in an environment conducive to diatoms and environmentally stressful to foraminifers. Lithological and geochemical evidence from the Sharon Springs indicates that the cold-water Claggett transgression resulted in a stratified water column in the middle of the WIC, as well as increased organic matter production. Biomarker analysis shows the presence of isoreneieratane indicating photic zone euxinia and therefore a fairly shallow chemocline within the WIC during the deposition of the Sharon Springs. Petrographic analysis of preserved organic matter show clumped floccules or flattened amalgamations of floccules in laminated facies. While dispersed amorphous organic matter is also present, flocculation had a major influence on organic matter preservation. Two possible depositional mechanisms, dependent on water density, could have resulted in these water conditions. If density contrasts existed between the cold water influx and the warm waters present during the deposition of the Niobrara, the cold waters would have progressed along the bottom of the basin leading to upwelling along the basin margin and basin stratification. If no significant density contrast existed, caballing would occur at the mixing front, leading to downwelling, rapid transport of organic matter to the sea floor and basin stratification. High energy deposits located at the base of the Sharon Springs resulted in reworking of bentonites. Lithological and mineralogical differences between the reworked bentonites and the more typical ash fall bentonite deposits located at the top of the Sharon Springs indicate that the reworked bentonites are not a significant drilling hazard. The reworked bentonites are a greenish-gray cohesive bentonite which shows distinct fining upward. These cohesive bentonites are typically associated with debrites, most likely forming from a cogenetic sediment gravity flow. Thin-section analysis shows fining-upward and reworking of particles in the cohesive bentonites indicating deposition under turbulent conditions. Clay analysis shows very low smectite and primarily kaolinite comprising the clay portion. At the top of the Sharon Springs is a light gray, friable bentonite deposit with abundant mixed-layer illite/smectite, discrete illite and kaolinite, which is more typical of an ash fall deposit. While the typical ash fall deposits are drilling hazards, the minimal amounts of swelling clay within the reworked bentonites imply significantly lower hazards at the base of the Sharon Springs. The reworked bentonites also provide implications for regional stratigraphic correlations since reworking may remove lateral continuity. Following deposition of the Pierre Shale, the Laramide Orogeny reactivated dormant structural features of the Ancestral Rockies resulting in formation of the Cañon City Embayment. The asymmetrical, synclinal nature of the basin results in variation in the Sharon Springs source rock maturity across the basin with the most mature rocks in the west along the Chandler Syncline. Biomarker analysis suggests some lateral hydrocarbon migration within the Pierre Shale petroleum system. This system is conventional in nature with hydrocarbons contained within the fracture network overlying the Sharon Springs. The system is not overpressured and is driven by gravity drainage and solution gas, therefore intersection with abundant natural fractures is essential for economic wells. However, RMS amplitude anomalies are highest where faults permeate from the Niobrara into the Pierre Shale indicating hydrocarbon migration from deeper formations. Genetic relationships from biomarker comparison between the Niobrara Formation, Sharon Springs Member and oil produced from the Pierre Shale Formation supports hydrocarbon migration from Niobrara source rocks.
    • Synthesis and application of porous materials as supports for nanoparticle, single-site, and biomolecule heterogeneous catalysts

      Trewyn, Brian; Moyer, Megan M.; Carreon, Moises A.; Richards, Ryan; Pylypenko, Svitlana (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      The application of porous materials as supports for catalysts has been a focus of academia and industry for many years. Mesoporous silicas (MSN) and ordered mesoporous carbons have been used due to their unique properties such as high surface area, tunable pore sizes, and chemical and thermal stability. These support materials often lend further stability to the catalysts they host, enabling their use in a wider variety of reaction environments. One type of porous support that has seen extensive use on an industrial scale is zeolites, and these can be paired with metal carbides formed in situ during methane dehydroaromatization, Fischer-Tropsch synthesis, or biomass conversion. Improvements to the synthesis of these carbides are made by altering the carburization gas mixture or adding promoter metals. Ordered mesoporous carbons templated from MSN are supports that not only have high surface area and good stability, but are also graphitic. However, their use at a large scale is limited by the time-consuming synthesis techniques, a lack of repeatability in batches, and poor thermal management when prepared in bulk. With simple kitchen tools, the process can reliably be scaled up while avoiding these problems. Further, these can be functionalized through a lithiation process, making them excellent hosts for single-site catalysts. MSN materials are effective supports for a variety of catalysts, including nanoparticle, molecular/single-site, and biomolecule. With their large pore size, more than one catalyst can be incorporated onto the support; a tandem Pd/Au nanoparticle system works cooperatively to facilitate the direct oxidative esterification of allyl alcohol at mild reaciton conditions. MSN materials can also be functionalized with organoalkoxysilanes via co-condensation resulting in a homogeneous distribution of functional groups. By adjusting the pre-hydrolysis time and hydrothermal treatment temperature, original particle morpholgy can be recovered after functionalization. These organic handles can further be reacted with a linker molecule to immobilize biocatalysts for unique reactions. Examining both the fundamental synthetic techniques and the applied side of these catalytic supports lends insight into how they can be used at a small or large scale.
    • Nozzle design and experimental evaluation to mitigate liquid loading in gas wells

      Zerpa, Luis E.; Singh, Jagmit; Ermila, Mansur A.; Partington, Ben; Gamboa, Jose (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      This study consists of an experimental investigation of nozzle geometry effect on critical/subcritical flow transitions with applications on liquid loading mitigation in gas wells. Experiments were conducted in a facility with 1.5 in. ID PVC pipelines and a 30 ft long vertical section, which mimics two-phase flow (air and water) in gas wells. In total, 27 different nozzle geometries were tested, which were divided into two groups – conical and parabolic nozzles. The nozzle geometries tested were 3D printed and had a throat size of 0.25 in. The experimental investigation was divided into three phases. The first phase consisted of a series of tests using 27 nozzle geometries in a single-phase (air) horizontal flow facility, with the purpose of determining the most optimum nozzle geometries groups based on measured key performance indicators. Phase two involved testing these top performing nozzle geometries in a two-phase horizontal flow loop. Phase three consisted of testing the same geometries as for phase two in a two-phase vertical flow loop, determining nozzle performance in vertical flow, comparing with horizontal flow observations and determining the most optimum nozzle geometry. A nozzle geometry was considered optimum if it exhibited the highest critical pressure ratio and at the same time minimized pressure drop across the nozzle. Experimental results from phase 1 showed that nozzle geometry does have a significant impact on nozzle performance. Nozzles from ASTAR, Deich, LJ and Moby Dick nozzle groups showed improved performance compared to other nozzle groups. An empirical model was created based on phase 1 data in order to determine the effect of surface area of convergent and divergent section of nozzle on nozzle performance. The map created can be used to predict critical pressure ratio of a nozzle geometry by matching the nozzle design to the ones that have been tested. It was also determined that a smaller diverging angle resulted in a higher critical pressure ratio. A nozzle with an elongated throat had a higher critical pressure ratio, but at the same time it had a higher pressure drop across the nozzle, hence was not optimum. Length of a nozzle did not have as much of an impact on nozzle performance as the throat diameter and shape of nozzle converging and diverging sections immediately before and after the throat. Phase 2 experimental results showed that critical pressure ratio decreases when two phases are flowed through the nozzle. The length of the annular churn flow pattern observed at the exit of the nozzle may have a correlation to the nozzle performance. Based on data analysis, ASTAR nozzle geometry was the most optimum nozzle. Phase 3 data was analyzed and the most optimum nozzle geometry was determined to be ASTAR nozzle 2. Comparison with phase 2 data indicated a further drop in critical pressure ratio and an increase in pressure drop due to the effect of gravitation of the fluid flow.
    • Development of CRISPR/Cas9 in Nannochloropsis and other algae toward understanding and manipulating energy allocation

      Posewitz, Matthew C.; Vogler, Brian W.; Boyle, Nanette R.; Richards, Ryan; Trewyn, Brian (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Nannochloropsis is a genus of eukaryotic microalgae that grows well in outdoor bioreactors and produces high yields of triacylglycerols (TAGs), which can be processed into biodiesel. In this work, we chemically characterize the storage carbohydrate of Nannochloropsis for the first time, and interrupt enzymes required for its biosynthesis to (1) understand their function and (2) interrogate whether this unused biomass component can be eliminated without significant impact on viability. To generate targeted gene knockouts, we developed CRISPR/Cas9 methods for Nannochloropsis and first interrupted nitrate reductase, a common target for genetic knockout because it is both inessential and easily scored. The method and validated chassis strain was then used to interrogate the beta-glucan synthase (BGS) and transglycosylase (TGS) enzymes believed to be responsible for the backbone polymerization and branching of the storage beta glucan, respectively. We identified no significant growth defects in our laboratory culturing conditions but did confirm that both genes were fundamental to synthesis of this beta glucan storage carbohydrate. The generated knockouts of either gene do not produce the elevated carbohydrate phenotype of wild-type cells in response to nitrogen deprivation. We also observed a non-bleaching phenotype in knockouts of BGS, where chlorophyll and carotenoid content remain elevated in mature cultures when wild-type cultures reduce their chlorophyll and carotenoid content. The design and diagnostic CRISPR/Cas9 methods developed for Nannochloropsis were then modified to transform a fast-growing high-light-, high-heat-, and high-salt-tolerant microalga Chlorella sp. strain CCMP252 with complexed Cas9-sgRNA to generate insertional knockouts of the nitrate reductase gene, demonstrating the broad applicability of the lessons learned.
    • Heat treating response of 0.6 C steels for saw chain applications

      Speer, J. G.; Youngblood, Ronald C.; Findley, Kip Owen; De Moor, Emmanuel (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      Steels used in saw chain applications require a combination of strength, toughness, and wear resistance. The focus of this project is to develop improved steels for saw chain applications by utilizing alloying and processing techniques to improve upon the current generation of saw chain steels. This is accomplished by studying the relationship between heat treatment processing and the corresponding microstructures and properties of two medium carbon low alloy steels. The first alloy is designated OCS 01 and is similar to a lean alloyed 8660 steel. The second alloy is a high silicon 9260 alloy, chosen for its ability to produce austenite containing microstructures in the carbon and hardness range of interest for current saw chain steels. Austempering, quenching and tempering (Q&T), and quenching and partitioning (Q&P) (9260 only) processing methods were simulated. For Q&P processing, the volume fraction of retained austenite decreased with time at higher partitioning temperatures, due to decomposition of the austenite to ferrite and iron carbides. Higher austempering temperatures decreased the time to reach bainitic transformation stasis, and increased the volume fraction of retained austenite. The austenite carbon content increased with time for each Q&P partitioning temperature evaluated. Vickers hardness measurements showed a consistent decrease in hardness with increased time and temperature when partitioning or tempering, as well as a decrease in hardness with increased isothermal austempering temperature. Charpy impact testing showed that the Q&P processing conditions of the 9260 alloy offer a significant improvement in Charpy impact energy absorbed at room and low ( 29 °C ( 20 °F)) temperature when compared to the 9260 austempered and Q&T conditions at equivalent hardness. DSRW wear testing showed that the Q&P 9260 conditions have improved low-impact abrasive wear resistance at equivalent hardness when compared to all other conditions evaluated. 9260 Q&P conditions had greater combinations of wear performance and Charpy impact performance when compared to the austempered and Q&T 9260 conditions. Tensile testing results showed that select 9260 processing conditions offer improved tensile properties (yield strength, peak stress, uniform elongation, and/or total elongation) when compared to the OCS-01 processing conditions. Increased amounts of retained austenite were observed to increase the total elongation of 9260 Q&P conditions, and increase the product of tensile strength and total elongation. A 9260 Q&P condition was identified, which offers improved combinations of tensile strength, uniform elongation, total elongation, and wear performance when compared to the OCS-01 conditions evaluated.
    • Many-body entangled dynamics of closed and open systems for quantum simulators

      Carr, Lincoln D.; Jaschke, Daniel; de Vega, Ines; Lusk, Mark T.; Zimmerman, Jeramy D.; Ganesh, Mahadevan (Colorado School of Mines. Arthur Lakes Library, 2018)
      When D-wave was founded in 1999, quantum computing was still an ambitious vision. In the past five years, quantum computing has moved from this vision to a very reachable goal with major companies such as Google, IBM, Intel, and Microsoft investigating quantum computation investing in this technology. Together with a vivid start-up scene including companies such as 1QBit, ionQ, Q-CTRL, QuantumCircuits, and Rigetti, they aim to develop hardware and software for a new generation of computers which can tackle problems intractable on classical computers. This thesis revolves around the simulation of such quantum systems and, thus, it has some direct connections to this intriguing new wave of technology. Our focus is shifted toward the side of quantum simulators, which use quantum systems to investigate a specific research question, e.g., predicting the properties of new materials. The results of such simulations can be thought of as an analog measurement outcome of the final state of the quantum simulator. Quantum annealing is one prominent example where the final state encodes the solution to an optimization problem. In contrast, quantum computers work in the spirit of a classical computer calculating in terms of zeros and ones while allowing superpositions and entanglement to reach a quantum advantage. They favor a formulation in terms of quantum gates, which are adapted from the logical gates used in classical computers. We establish a common understanding of the terminology and questions arising in this area of research in the first part of the thesis. We consider the dynamics of closed quantum systems, which has direct connections to the quantum annealing architectures. We analyze how long-range interactions in the quantum Ising model modify the quantum phase diagram. The quantum critical point for the ferromagnetic model shifts to higher external fields to break up the order in comparison to the nearest neighbor model. In contrast, the antiferromagnetic order breaks at lower external fields when including long-range interactions. In the dynamics, we quench through the quantum critical points evaluated for different values for the long-range interactions and analyze the Kibble-Zurek hypothesis via the defects generated in the ferro- and antiferromagnetic limits. These simulations reveal how the number of defects depends on the quench rate and the strength of the long-range interactions, where we find that the defect density decreases toward the nearest-neighbor limit in the ferromagnetic model. Such results are valuable when considering the balance between long-range interactions and quench rates in adiabatic quantum computing. We then move on to open quantum systems. Closed systems are an incomplete description of a quantum system when it is disturbed from an environment or measurement devices not included in the description of the closed system; such effects lead to decoherence of the system. We focus on large reservoirs described by the Lindblad master equation. The research questions revolve around the thermalization of a many-body quantum system. This study treating open quantum systems can be seen as the analog of the eigenstate thermalization hypothesis vs. generalized Gibbs ensemble handling closed quantum systems with regards to the question of whether or not thermalization occurs. The choice of the operator in the interaction Hamiltonian between the system and the reservoir governs which limit of the phase diagram cannot thermalize by definition in the global multi-channel approach. Furthermore, we find regions in the phase diagram of a small quantum Ising chain protected from thermalization and decoherence. Evidently, other regions are favorable to reach thermalization as quick as possible, which is essential to dissipative state preparation. In addition to the global multi-channel model, we analyze the concept of neighborhood single-channel Lindblad operators, which allows one to install non-trivial long-range order; this is a task where single-site single-channel Lindblad operators fail. The next part treats the numerical methods used in the first chapters of this thesis. We describe the exact diagonalization and tensor network algorithms; both are available in our open source package Open Source Matrix Product States. The algorithms contain a selection of state-of-the-art methods for closed and open quantum system, e.g., matrix product density operators as tensor network type and the time-dependent variational principle as time evolution method. We aim for an upgrade from a stand-alone package to the integration into a science gateway. Science gateways serve as a cloud resource for research software. The results from the research on tensor network methods during this thesis will significantly contribute to an efficient science gateway using the algorithms with optimal scaling and versatile features such as meaningful error bars. The equations to estimate error bars for many observables depend on easily accessible parameters such as the system size, the energy gap to the first excited state, and the variance of the energy. The error bounds of the bond entropy in the quantum Ising model are at the level of 0.01, where most other observables such as spin measurements have a tighter error bound of around 0.001 for 256 sites. The choice of the most efficient algorithm plays a key role in many-body mixed states as we simulate the density matrix instead of a pure state. Providing all three major methods for mixed states within our library, we have the option to pick locally purified tensor networks to calculate thermal states and matrix product density operators for the dynamics governed by the Lindblad equation. Both choices are based on the examples in this thesis. Quantum trajectories are favorable for systems generating a large amount of entanglement and simulations parallelized across a large number of CPU cores, which is on the order of magnitude of the number of trajectories. We close the thesis with a discussion of the results in the context of the present research and highlight how the work presented raises even more intriguing questions. This collection of open questions is considered in the second part of the conclusion. These projects can be divided loosely into additions to the numerical methods enabling novel modeling of quantum systems and simulations predicting the actual behavior of physical systems, where most of them can be solved with the present software.