NETL: Development of Geomechanical Screening Tools to Identify Risk: An Experimental and Modeling Approach for Secure CO2 Storage

(funded by DOE)

Carbon dioxide is a reservoir pore fluid of much interest because of applications to enhanced oil recovery (EOR) and more recently because of the pressing needs for carbon dioxide geological storage as an option to reduce CO2 emissions to the atmosphere. Although CO2 has been used for decades in EOR, successful carbon geological storage at commercial scale requires enhanced storage efficiency and safe CO2 containment over thousands of years.

The main objectives of this project are to:

  • Measure petrophysical and hydro-mechanical properties of rocks in the presence of CO2 in the laboratory. Perform these experiments under varying conditions of temperature and chemical reactivity of rocks with CO2
  • Develop upscaling methods for rock petrophysical and hydro-mechanical properties considering natural heterogeneity and pre-existing fractures
  • Develop advanced and cost-effective coupled solvers for simulations of coupled flow and geomechanics
  • Simulate numerically and perform history matching of CO2 injection results at a field sites
  • Develop schemes for quantifying the residual uncertainty after model calibration and data assimilation
  • Quantify reservoir overpressure and strains caused by pore pressure, thermal and chemical loadings; show the influence of each type of loading and the occurrence of emergent phenomena
  • Predict reservoir fluid composition after injection, which would serve as an input for evaluating geochemical reactivity of CO2 at in potential leaks through fractures and faults
  • Develop guidelines to mitigate the risks of CO2 injection in the subsurface

University of Texas Cockrell Labs

University of Texas Cockrell Engineering Lab University of Texas Cockrell School of Engineering

The NETL Team for CSM