Environmental Technology for Geological Storage of Carbon Dioxide
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Work Package # 4

Work Package # 4: Methods for detection of gaseous CO2 in shallow aquifers: Team Leader Esben Auken (GI,AU), participants Marian Hertrig (ETH), Karsten Høgh Jensen (IGG, KU), Torben O. Sonnenborg(GEUS), Lone Klinkby (Vattenfall), Ph.D. students (James Ramm, Århus University and Rune Lassen, Copenhagen University).

The objective of this work package is to investigate the migration of CO2 in shallow aquifers, and its detection, in a field experiment. Liquid CO2 will be injected into a sandy aquifer. After decompression a CO2 gas phase will form and migrate upwards through the saturated zone as an analogue to a CO2 gas bubble resulting from depressurization of escaped supercritical CO2 fluid. The detection of the gaseous phase in the saturated zone will be assessed by using geophysical methods. Based on borehole information and geophysical mapping a detailed geological model will be established to characterize the subsurface and the hydraulic parameters at the injection site. This information will be shared with WP3. The "regional" 3D structures will be mapped using transient electromagnetic while a 3D resistivity monitoring array will be permanently installed for time lapse monitoring of resistivity changes in the subsurface associated with the injection of CO2. The magneto resonance sounding technique will be applied to map the water content before the experiment. To enable a detailed 3D reconstruction of changes in resistivity and water saturation, a scheme facilitating joint time lapse inversion is implemented. The TOUGH code (WP2) will be used to establish a 3D numerical multi-phase flow model for the field site where the geological model and parameterization is incorporated which also will assist in the design of the CO2 injection experiment. Simulations on stochastic realizations (Lee et al., 2007) of the hydraulic parameter distribution will be generated to quantify the uncertainty of the CO2-migration pattern. Model simulations will subsequently be compared to the field data (geophysical mapping of the spatial and temporal variation of CO2 saturations and measurements of CO2 fluxes at the soil surface) in order to understand the CO2 movement. The possibility of up-scaling will be examined with the purpose of extending the modelling approach to larger depths, e.g., near the CO2 storage reservoir, where the density of data points will be low. Based on the experiments and the model simulations, general recommendations for monitoring the shallow groundwater systems for CO2 leakage from CCS storages will be worked out.

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