ARRA Research

Geologic Sequestration Site Characterization (GSSC) -

Recovery Act: An Evaluation of the Carbon Sequestration Potential of the Cambro-Ordovician Strata of the Illinois and Michigan Basins

Project No: FE0002068

Project Description

NETL is supporting a consortium led by the Illinois State Geological Survey (ISGS) to conduct an evaluation of the carbon storage potential of the Cambro- Ordovician Strata of the Illinois and Michigan Basins, which underlie much of the states of Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, and Michigan. To date, only cursory studies have been done on the reservoir zones of the carbonate Knox Supergroup, and no field tests or detailed studies have been conducted on the seal potential of the various overlaying shale formations.
During Phase I of DOE’s Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership (RCSP) research program found that the Mt. Simon Sandstone is a major storage opportunity in the region. It was found that some areas of the Mt Simon is either too deep or of limited permeability to be viable for CO2 storage. Therefore, an evaluation of the storage potential of the Cambro-Ordovician strata, which overlays the Mt Simon, will identify secondary storage opportunities and provide a possible storage resource in the Midwest. The target reservoirs for the Cambro-Ordovician are the porous zones within the Knox Supergroup and the St. Peter Sandstone. The seals of Knox Supergroup include the Maquoketa (Utica) and New Albany shales (Figure 1).
In the early phase of the project, whole core from the MGSC field test in Decatur, Illinois will be collected and a 120 mile 2-D seismic acquisition will be shot in western Illinois. The Kentucky Geologic Survey will conduct a CO2 injection test in Hancock County, Kentucky. These data and existing data will be used to estimate the regional injectivity and storage capacity of the St. Peter Sandstone (Figure 2) and intervals of the Knox Supergroup (Figure 3). Specific studies include modeling the dissolution of CO2 in brine and the interaction with carbonate reservoir rocks, geomechanical tests and petrophysical analyses, an evaluation of mineralization rates, and an analysis of seal faulting potential. The project will conclude with recommendations on the types of data needed to characterize particular reservoirs, which will be incorporated into a best practices manual for assessing the suitability of a Cambro-Ordovician site for CO2 storage. Spatial maps of high- and lowpotential areas of the St. Peter Sandstone and Knox Supergroup will be uploaded to the National Carbon Sequestration Database and Information System (NATCARB).

Project Details