Review and implications of relative permeability of CO2/brine systems and residual trapping of CO2

N.M. Burnside, M. Naylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

The adoption of carbon capture and storage (CCS) as a method of mitigating anthropogenic CO emissions will depend on the ability of initial geological storage projects to demonstrate secure containment of injected CO. Potential leakage pathways, such as faults or degraded wells, increase the uncertainty of geological storage security. CCS as an industry is still in its infancy and until we have experience of industrial scale, long term CO storage projects, quantifying leakage event probabilities will be problematic. Laboratory measurements of residual saturation trapping, the immobilisation of isolated micro-bubbles of CO in reservoir pores, provides an evidence base to determine the fraction of injected CO that will remain trapped in the reservoir, even if a leakage event were to occur. Experimental results for sandstone, the most common target lithology for storage projects, demonstrate that 13-92% of injected CO can be residually trapped. Mineralisation, the only other geological trapping mechanism which guarantees permanent trapping of CO, immobilises CO over hundreds to thousands of years. In comparison, residual trapping occurs over years to decades, a timescale which is more relevant to CCS projects during their operational phase and to any financial security mechanisms they require to secure storage permits.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2014

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • CCS
  • CO2
  • Geological storage


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