UKCCSRC Call 2 Project: Quantifying Residual and Dissolution Trapping in the CO2CRC Otway Injection Site

Dataset description

Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is a promising means of directly lowering CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion. However, concerns about the possibility of CO2 leakage are contributing to slow the widespread adoption of the technology. Research to date has failed to identify a cheap and effective means of measuring how CO2 injected underground is being stored. CO2 can be stored in four different ways: 1.Physically - where gaseous or liquid CO2 is trapped beneath an impermeable sealing cap rock. 2.Residually - where CO2 is trapped within individual and dead end spaces between rock grains (pores). 3.Solubility - where CO2 is dissolved into the formation water, which fills the pores between rock grains. 4.Mineralisation - where CO2 reacts with the host rock forming new carbonate minerals within the pores. Importantly, physically trapped CO2 is mobile and able to leak should a break form in the overlying sealing rocks. CO2 stored by the other three means is not mobile or buoyant, and hence will not migrate out of the CO2 storage site should the seal fail. It is therefore critical for reassurance to the public and regulators of CO2 storage that reliable ways to measure how much of the CO2 injected into the subsurface for storage is locked away in these secure means. Few research studies to date have quantified exactly how much CO2 is stored by residual and solubility trapping across an entire storage site. Estimations have been made from laboratory studies on rock core samples, but these only represent rocks from a small part of the CO2 storage site. Extending these results to infer how CO2 will be stored in the entire storage site is difficult as the rock cores do not represent the variation seen across the storage site. It is possible to use seismic waves to image the CO2 injected. This has proved to be a reliable means of imaging large amounts of CO2 but is unable to image thin layers of CO2 or % dissolved CO2 which makes it very difficult to quantify exactly how CO2 is being stored. Hence, there is a need to develop a reliable test which can be performed at a single CO2 injection well during assessment of a potential site for CO2 storage. This would allow the amount of CO2 which will be residually trapped in the storageformation to be determined. Such a test will lower the risk of mis-estimating the storage capacity of a site and provide a commercial operator with greater reassurance of the predictability of their proposed storage site. We will work with one of the world's leading research organisations focused on CCS, CO2CRC. They own and operate a dedicated research facility into CO2 storage, at Otway CO2 in Australia. This is uniquely suitable because in mid-2011 Otway undertook a successful experimental programme focused on determining residual trapping. Building on these experiments and in direct collaboration with CO2CRC we will use water geochemistry to establish the fate of CO2 injected into the Otway site by quantifying both the level of CO2 residually and solubility trapped and at what distance into the reservoir. This will be achieved using noble gas tracer injection and recovery, to determine residual trapping levels, and by independent oxygen stable isotope measurements to quantify the amount of CO2 dissolution. These tests will calibrate downhole geophysical techniques which CO2CRC will use. Grant number: UKCCSRC-C2-204.

Further information

For more information please contact:


Environmental Science Centre, Nicker Hill, Keyworth
NG12 5GG

Tel : +44 (0)115 936 3143
Fax :+44 (0)115 936 3276

Associated dataset(s)

UKCCSRC Call 2 project blog: Quantifying Residual and Dissolution Trapping in the CO2CRC Otway Injection Site, Update, 20.01.15

UKCCSRC Call 2 project poster: Quantifying Residual and Dissolution Trapping in the CO2CRC Otway Injection Site, Cranfield Biannual, 21.04.15

Dataset details

Author(s) Stuart Gilfillan
Principal Investigator(s) Stuart Gilfillan
University of Edinburgh
Language English
Curator British Geological Survey
Supply media/format Not available
Storage format Not available
Frequency of update not applicable
Start of capture {ts '2014-09-01 00:00:00'} Not known
End of capture {ts '2016-08-01 00:00:00'} Before August 2016
Online access URL  
Lineage statement UKCCSRC Call 2 project, grant number: UKCCSRC-C2-204, Lead institution: University of Edinburgh
Supplementary information
Access constraints intellectualPropertyRights (rights to financial benefit from and control of distribution of non-tangible property that is a result of creativity)
Use constraints intellectualPropertyRights (rights to financial benefit from and control of distribution of non-tangible property that is a result of creativity)
Additional info on constraints
Contact details
Department Enquiries
Organisation British Geological Survey
Address Environmental Science Centre, Nicker Hill, Keyworth
City Nottingham
County Nottinghamshire
Country United Kingdom
Postcode NG12 5GG
Telephone +44 (0)115 936 3143
Fax +44 (0)115 936 3276
Topic category code (ISO) geoscientificInformation (information pertaining to earth sciences)
Keyword source BGS Keyphrases
Spatial details
Spatial Reference System Not available
Dataset extent
Coverage (Lat/Long) North boundary : 
East boundary  : 
South boundary : 
West boundary  : 
Metadata language English
Metadata last updated 23rd June 2016
Metadata standard compliance NERC profile of ISO19115:2003
Copyright and IPR
The copyright of materials derived from the British Geological Survey's work is vested in the Natural Environment Research Council [NERC]. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, or stored in a retrieval system of any nature, without the prior permission of the copyright holder, via the BGS Intellectual Property Rights Manager. Use by customers of information provided by the BGS, is at the customer's own risk. In view of the disparate sources of information at BGS's disposal, including such material donated to BGS, that BGS accepts in good faith as being accurate, the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) gives no warranty, expressed or implied, as to the quality or accuracy of the information supplied, or to the information's suitability for any use. NERC/BGS accepts no liability whatever in respect of loss, damage, injury or other occurence however caused.