CCS and Power Systems

Carbon Storage - Geologic Storage Technologies and Simulation and Risk Assessment

Consolidated Sequestration Research Project

Project No: FWP-ESD09-056

Project Description

LBNL will work on a series of individual tasks with the common goal of advancing the science of geological sequestration through state-of-the-art research. The various tasks address DOE program goals to accelerate deployment of and reduce barriers to commercial-scale geologic carbon sequestration. Researching large-scale CO2 geological storage will further improve our understanding of the potential impacts of carbon dioxide sequestration on groundwater resources. In addition, the research team will assess storage capacity and regulation by developing pressure management schemes for storage capacity enhancement and CO2 leakage remediation, should it be necessary. Project tasks include project management; identifying ways to improve predictions of injectivity and capacity of saline formations and depleted gas reservoirs; and testing and implementing innovative, high-resolution methods for monitoring CO2 in the subsurface. Other tasks include researching elements of risk assessment, using modeling and simulation techniques, measuring large scale impacts of geological storage, and collaborative projects to obtain information gained through global partnerships. A detailed description of each task is listed below:

  • Project Management: Management and coordination of the six work packages will be carried out through effective project management.
  • GEO-SEQ: The goal of GEO-SEQ Project is to increase understanding of carbon dioxide storage processes and mechanisms by accomplishing two primary objectives: (1) develop ways to improve predictions of injectivity and capacity of saline formations and depleted gas reservoirs, and (2) develop and test innovative, high-resolution methods for monitoring CO2 in the subsurface. GEO-SEQ leverages scientific understanding and technology development through highly visible, ongoing, world-class projects, including the Otway Project in Australia and In Salah Industrial-Scale CO2 Storage Project in Algeria. GEO-SEQ investigates fundamental geochemical and petrophysical processes that underpin GCS using demonstration scale pilots as testing facilities to scale up from laboratory to field scale.
  • Certification Framework and National Risk Assessment Program: This is a continuation of LBNL’s effort in developing the Certification Framework (CF) to assess the safety and effectiveness of geologic carbon sequestration sites, with application of the CF to Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership (RCSP) Phase III projects. Unlike smaller pilot projects, the RCSP Phase III projects involve CO2 injection at larger scales requiring further applications &"and risk assessment development. This task also includes the new National Risk Assessment Program effort involving collaborative research in five topical areas with NETL and three other national laboratories.
  • Sim-SEQ: Sim-SEQ is a modeling and simulation activities inter-comparison and evaluation performed within the RCSP program. It enables model uncertainties to be evaluated and their impacts assessed, as well as improve future modeling efforts by making lessons learned and improvements made by one research team available to other research teams. A broad Technical Team consisting of both LBNL and RCSP scientists and reservoir engineers will evaluate and compare different approaches to reservoir and coupled reservoir-geomechanical and geochemical models. Various modeling groups established by the RCSPs will develop individual models (based on a single set of site characterization data) for the Southeast Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership Phase III Cranfield Site using their respective model approaches and simulators. This will allow for a direct comparison of models and interaction between multiple RCSP modeling groups.
  • Large-Scale Hydrological Impacts of CO2 Geological Storage: This project is to develop a better understanding of the potential magnitude and extent of water-pressure increase and brine displacement in deep saline reservoirs in response to full-scale deployment of future CO2 storage. Several predictive assessment tools featuring different degrees of complexity are being developed and utilized, ranging from semi-analytical estimation methods to complex high-performance prediction models. The study consists of three main topical areas: to improve the prediction reliability of basin-scale models (Model Confidence); to quantify the impact of brine pressurization and migration on groundwater resources (Impact Assessment); and to evaluate pressure management schemes via brine extraction (Management and Mitigation). The study will further improve overall understanding of the largescale hydrological impacts of geologic carbon sequestration on groundwater resources and corresponding implications on storage capacity estimation and Area-of-Review regulation, and to develop pressure management schemes for storage capacity enhancement and CO2 leakage remediation in the unlikely event that it is needed.
  • CO2SINK Collaboration: The CO2SINK collaborative project will obtain information gained through the midscale geological sequestration experiment (involving injection of approximately 100,000 metric tons of CO2 in a saline formation) planned for Ketzin, Germany. The objective of CO2SINK is to further the scientific fundamentals of geological carbon sequestration and increase public confidence that CO2 injection and storage can be done safely, and without adverse environmental consequences. As part of the CO2SINK project, LBNL will conduct Distributed Thermal Perturbation Sensor (DTPS) measurements in two observation boreholes to understand the movement and behavior of CO2 in the subsurface, as well as perform laboratory-based studies on sample cores to develop rock physics models for predicting seismic waveform propagation as a function of variable CO2 saturation.

Project Details