Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Periodic Report Summary 1 - CO2-REACT (Geologic Carbon Storage)

The CO2-REACT ITN was developed to address three key objectives:

(1) Improve the scientific basis for geologic carbon storage through a collaborative research program composed of expert European industrial and academic partners. CO2-REACT aims to significantly advance our understanding and our ability to store CO2 in the subsurface.
(2) To train the next generation of scientists with innovative, multidisciplinary backgrounds for careers addressing the challenges of carbon storage in industry.
(3) To raise public awareness to the needs, challenges and safety issues in subsurface CO2 storage.

The CO2-REACT ITN is composed of 6 academic and 6 industrial teams. Academic partners' expertise spans the reactivity of carbon bearing minerals at scales ranging from the atomic to the field scale. The six industry partners comprise a spectrum of the largest stakeholders in CO2 storage, including petroleum, cement manufacture, environmental consulting, and geothermal energy. By formally joining these teams, CO2-REACT is a training/research platform, unique in the world in its ability to understand the fate and consequences of CO2 injected into subsurface reservoirs using an impressive array of experimental and modeling techniques.

Over its first 2 years, the CO2-REACT ITN has made remarkable progress in advancing the scientific basis for the subsurface geologic storage of CO2. Some of the highlights include results on

1) Quantifying the rates of CO2- H2O-mineral reactions: A major effort of CO2-REACT is being made to determine the conditions and rates at which carbon injected into the subsurface is transformed into stable carbonate minerals such as calcite and magnesite. The motivation for this effort is that once it has transformed into carbonate minerals, the carbon is stable and immobile assuring the permanent storage of the injected carbon. The approach taken in CO2-REACT is two-fold. Laboratory experiments are being combined with observations of mineral carbonation in the field to obtain a complete picture of the carbonation process. For example, CO2-REACT fellow Deirdre Clark, together with our partner at Reykjavik energy has been characterizing the carbonation of basalt at the CARB-FIX carbon injection site at Hellisheidi, Iceland. Her work shows the mode and effectiveness of this carbon transformation reaction.

2) Detection of CO2 leakage through caprocks: Essential to long-term safe carbon storage in the subsurface is that it does not migrate back to and leak at the surface. To develop methods to assess potential leakage, CO2-REACT members have been developing novel gas membrane portable instruments to detect CO2 leakage at the surface. These instruments are currently being field tested, and results are being used to calibrate computer models of CO2 transport in the subsurface. A gas membrane instrument developed in collaboration with CO2-REACT partner West Systems is used by ESR Ana Hernandez in the field.

3) Development of Improved Reactive Transport models: To date CO2-REACT members have made considerable advances in developing 2-dimensional reactive transport models to predict the long term fate and consequences of the injection of CO2 into typical subsurface saline aquifers. These improved models show the development of distinct heterogeneities in the subsurface. CO2-REACT fellow Alvaro Sainz Garcia based at our industrial partner Amphos 21 has illustrated representative results of the distribution of carbon in a 10 m deep saline aquifer as calculated using the iPC model improved to include realistic mineral reaction rates.

For more information about the CO2-REACT ITN, please consult our website

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