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Title: Assessing the Geomechanical Response of CO2 Disposal in Flood Basalt Reservoirs

Abstract

In this work, we complete a multi-scale investigation of the physical processes governing geologic CO2 sequestration in basalt reservoirs. This work integrates (i) laboratory measurements of relative permeability in a basalt fracture, (ii) theoretical modeling to understand how relative permeability uncertainty affects geomechanical performance attributes of basalt reservoirs, (iii) outcrop-scale simulation to identify the characteristics of vertical CO2 flow in a basalt fracture network, and (iv) regional-scale assessment of permeability architecture in the Columbia River Basalt Group (CRBG). These individual studies are combined into a site-scale stochastic model of geologic CO2 sequestration in the Columbia River Plateau, which shows how bulk and relative permeability variability affects geomechanical reservoir integrity and storage capacity of flood basalt reservoirs. This project resulted in a novel laboratory technique that combines X-ray CT and micro-PET scanning to calculate the relative permeability curves for a horizontal fracture in basalt. We also discovered that permeability on the Columbia River Plateau exhibits directionally-dependent spatial correlation, which our analysis suggests is a result of loading-induced subsidence. This analysis further discovered that permeability in the CRBG may increase at depth due to bending moment stresses. In the context of CO2 sequestration, this result implies that storage capacity and injectivity maymore » actually increase at depths beyond ~1 km. Our outcrop-scale investigation found that buoyant, free-phase CO2 tends to accumulate at fracture intersections, which inhibits vertical flow over 10+ year timescales and may facilitate both physical and chemical trapping as fluid mobility decreases. At the site-scale, we find that in flood basalt reservoirs the spatial configuration of reservoir permeability exhibits substantial control on CO2 injectivity. We utilized known borehole geology from the Wallula Basalt Sequestration Pilot Project to develop 50 equally probable permeability configurations and found that a single injection well operating at 95% of the borehole breakout pressure can deliver 0.12 to 2.0 million metric tons of CO2 per year (MMT CO2 per year). This maximum injection rate can support a 1,000 MW gas-fired power plant with a single injection well.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];
  1. Virginia Polytechnic Inst. and State Univ. (Virginia Tech), Blacksburg, VA (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Fossil Energy (FE), Clean Coal and Carbon (FE-20)
OSTI Identifier:
1483374
Report Number(s):
DOE-VT-FE0023381
DOE Contract Number:  
FE0023381
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
58 GEOSCIENCES; Carbon capture and sequestration; Columbia River Basalt Group; relative permeability; TOUGH3

Citation Formats

Pollyea, Ryan M, and Benson, Sally M. Assessing the Geomechanical Response of CO2 Disposal in Flood Basalt Reservoirs. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.2172/1483374.
Pollyea, Ryan M, & Benson, Sally M. Assessing the Geomechanical Response of CO2 Disposal in Flood Basalt Reservoirs. United States. doi:10.2172/1483374.
Pollyea, Ryan M, and Benson, Sally M. Fri . "Assessing the Geomechanical Response of CO2 Disposal in Flood Basalt Reservoirs". United States. doi:10.2172/1483374. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1483374.
@article{osti_1483374,
title = {Assessing the Geomechanical Response of CO2 Disposal in Flood Basalt Reservoirs},
author = {Pollyea, Ryan M and Benson, Sally M},
abstractNote = {In this work, we complete a multi-scale investigation of the physical processes governing geologic CO2 sequestration in basalt reservoirs. This work integrates (i) laboratory measurements of relative permeability in a basalt fracture, (ii) theoretical modeling to understand how relative permeability uncertainty affects geomechanical performance attributes of basalt reservoirs, (iii) outcrop-scale simulation to identify the characteristics of vertical CO2 flow in a basalt fracture network, and (iv) regional-scale assessment of permeability architecture in the Columbia River Basalt Group (CRBG). These individual studies are combined into a site-scale stochastic model of geologic CO2 sequestration in the Columbia River Plateau, which shows how bulk and relative permeability variability affects geomechanical reservoir integrity and storage capacity of flood basalt reservoirs. This project resulted in a novel laboratory technique that combines X-ray CT and micro-PET scanning to calculate the relative permeability curves for a horizontal fracture in basalt. We also discovered that permeability on the Columbia River Plateau exhibits directionally-dependent spatial correlation, which our analysis suggests is a result of loading-induced subsidence. This analysis further discovered that permeability in the CRBG may increase at depth due to bending moment stresses. In the context of CO2 sequestration, this result implies that storage capacity and injectivity may actually increase at depths beyond ~1 km. Our outcrop-scale investigation found that buoyant, free-phase CO2 tends to accumulate at fracture intersections, which inhibits vertical flow over 10+ year timescales and may facilitate both physical and chemical trapping as fluid mobility decreases. At the site-scale, we find that in flood basalt reservoirs the spatial configuration of reservoir permeability exhibits substantial control on CO2 injectivity. We utilized known borehole geology from the Wallula Basalt Sequestration Pilot Project to develop 50 equally probable permeability configurations and found that a single injection well operating at 95% of the borehole breakout pressure can deliver 0.12 to 2.0 million metric tons of CO2 per year (MMT CO2 per year). This maximum injection rate can support a 1,000 MW gas-fired power plant with a single injection well.},
doi = {10.2172/1483374},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {11}
}