Simulation of potential geological storage sites of carbon dioxide using Eclipse 300
Engineering Honours Degree 2009
University of Adelaide
Carbon dioxide capture and storage (CCS) is considered as one of the options for reducing
atmospheric emissions of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) from human activities. CO2 is emitted
principally from the burning of fossil fuels, both in the large combustion units such as those
used for electric power generation and in smaller, distributed sources such as automatic
engines. The increase in CO2 in the atmosphere acts to trap outgoing infrared and thermal
radiation, thereby increasing near-surface temperatures (Sengul, 2006). The short to
medium-term solution to mitigating these effects is by capturing and storing produced CO2 in
underground sites. These sites may include depleted oil reservoirs, depleted gas reservoirs,
and saline aquifers.
By using the latest ECLIPSE software developed by leading oilfield services company
Schlumberger, an investigation into the most effective CO2 storage site and modeling option
was completed. The best CO2 storage site was in Deep Ocean and saline aquifer
environments at 500 to 3000 metres water depth. At these depths CO2 can be injected in its
supercritical state which is a requirement of the storage process.
Saline aquifer CO2 storage was accurately represented by simulations run in ECLIPSE
software using the CO2STORE keyword option. Conversely, the GASWAT option (for
depleted gas reservoirs) inaccurately modeled the density and viscosity of water when
compared to expected results. The results given by the CO2STORE and GASWAT
keywords were not consistent, as the GASWAT keyword consistently underestimated the
density and viscosity of the saline water.
Under appropriate pressure, temperature and chemical conditions in the CO2-water system,
solid hydrates will form. Neither of the CO2 storage keywords GASWAT or CO2STORE was
able to model the solid phase of CO2. Further development of the ECLIPSE simulator in
terms of consistent output options between the keywords is needed so that significant
comparisons can be made.