CCSMR related research began at the beginning of FY15. Some of the research being conducted under CCSMR is related to research that originated with tasks under the Consolidated Sequestration Research Project (CSRP) which wrapped up at the end of FY15. Each year since FY15, the CCSMR tasks have changed and evolved. Our current focus is as follows:
The Core Carbon Storage and Monitoring Research Program (CCSMR) started at the beginning of FY 2015 with the purpose of advancing emergent monitoring technologies that can be used in commercial carbon storage projects. Our Targeted R&D portfolio is based on technologies considered essential for enabling carbon storage but require further development in order to meet performance and cost goals to support multi-decadal reservoir surveillance. Much of our progress to date has relied on using highly leveraged international collaborations, where LBNL can apply emergent technologies in field monitoring to help accelerate the commercialization of carbon sequestration. The monitoring technologies we are focused on include permanent seismic imaging using Surface Orbital Vibrators and Distributed Acoustic Sensing (SOV-DAS), advancement of joint EM-seismic methods, technology for monitoring induced seismicity at depth, investigating fault leakage mechanics and long-term cap-rock seal capabilities, fiber optic-based Distributed Strain Sensing and monitoring (DSS). Current international research partners include Carbon Management Canada’s Containment and Monitoring Institute (CaMI, Canada), CO2CRC’s Otway Project (Australia), Archer Daniels Midland (ADM, Illinois, USA), SINTEF’s aCQurate project (Norway), and the Petroleum Technology Research Council Aquistore Project (PTRC, Canada), and. The Program is subdivided into three main Tasks; in each task we address a technology that is initially considered at a Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of 3-4 and we aim to advance it to the TRL of 4-5.
CCSMR Program Tasks:
Second Generation SOV-DAS
The capability for SOV-DAS to be used for seismic imaging has been explored by initial trials at two field laboratories, the CO2CRC Otway Project site and the ADM project. While these initial trials allowed us to test the basic concept, there were many lessons learned, both in the design and operation of hardware and the collection and processing of data. We have identified several areas required to advance the maturity level of the technology, which we plan to address during the Otway Stage 3 project. The Otway Project Stage 3 plans to incorporate SOV-DAS technology using a total of 9 SOV source points distributed throughout the monitoring field and an extensive network of DAS cable installed along six wells. Preliminary testing during FY 2017 showed that high frequency motors, even with lower force can improve seismic imaging acquisition. We plan to install both 10 Ton-force motors that can operate up to 80 Hz along with 4 Ton-force motors that operate up to 160 Hz and explore ways to acquire and merge data from those two collocated sources. We also learned that there needs to be greater understanding in what constitutes an optimal source signature for data deconvolution. Further deployments of the SOV-DAS technology will allow us to improve the understanding on how to make a field-laboratory scale system. A new development in SOV-DAS hardware is the design of a motor mount that will allow for swept horizontal shear wave orientation by rotating the motor on a slewing bearing. The Otway Stage 3 SOV-DAS network will be used to monitor an injection of approximately 15,000 Ton CO2-rich gas supplied by the nearby Buttress Well.
Integrated Plume Monitoring using Joint EM-Seismic and Strain Sensing
This task is focused on the activities that LBNL is developing as part of a comprehensive CO2 plume monitoring effort undergoing at Containment and Monitoring Institute’s Field Research Station in Brooks, Alberta, Canada (CaMI-FRS). LBNL benefits from access to the field facility which represents a unique opportunity to monitor upward migration of CO2 plume following a shallow injection. The experiment is crucial to test monitoring technologies and study the impacts from leakage and secondary accumulation of gas-phase CO2 at intermediate depths as an analog for a leak into a “thief zone”. The goal pursued by LBNL of combining EM and Seismic is key to simultaneously monitor and quantify the boundary of plume leakage and plume body saturation. Starting from November 2019, the Institute maintained a steady injection rate of 300 kg of CO2 per week with a single hiatus of two weeks in late December during the winter holidays. As of May 31st, 2020, the cumulative amount of CO2 injected into the reservoir equals 30 Tonnes. The gas-phase CO2 has been detected by electrical resistivity tomography (ERT), Distributed Temperature Sensing (DTS), surveys run by the Institute. The benefit of the joint EM-Seismic monitoring program introduced by LBNL is to determine whether the plume is confined to the injection depth of 300 m into water-filled sandstones or it vertically leaked through the overlying shales and mixed sand/shale sequences forming the cap rocks, giving information also on the boundaries and the total volumetric extension of the leak.
During FY 2018-2019, major progress was made towards a fully integrated and efficient cross-well EM-Seismic acquisition and recording systems. Both the EM and Seismic systems now beneficiate of the increased signal power and wider bandwidth of the second-generation signal amplifier technology developed entirely at LBNL. From the software side, we identified and optimized individual inversion capabilities while current work is focused toward the sequential and joint inversion of the EM and Seismic baseline datasets.
As of FY 2020, this Task absorbed the previous task titled “US-Japan CCS Collaboration on Fibre-Optic Technology” to create an integrated monitoring program which will continue to benefit from EM-Seismic datasets but also include fiber optics-based Distributed Strain Sensing (DSS) with the goal of monitoring geomechanical processes during CO2 injection. At CaMI-FRS, we will use a Brillouin scattering-based interrogator which is coupled with the fiber optical cable installed in the wells behind casing and on the surface trenches. The purpose will be to assess the maturity of DSS for providing critical information on hydro-mechanical coupling. During the past years of CCSMR, LBNL has (1) installed a fiber network 4.5 km long composed of several different optical cables to test their ability to capture radial and axial strain and to compare their sensitivity, (2) performed strain and temperature calibration tests on the different optical cables in laboratory, (3) developed a 3D geomechanical model of the CaMI FRS Site with detailed discretization of storage, cap rock formations and wells designs, and (4) is monitoring in situ the temperature and strain.
Monitoring Technology for Deep CO2 Injection
Our objective is for this task is to quantify induced seismicity (IS) hazards and reduce the risk resulting from (a) detection of smaller microseismic events at depth and (b) potential early detection of faults and their incipient failure, thereby advancing the development and validation of technologies that enable safe, permanent geologic storage of CO2 and further developing the ability to image basement faults.
To improve IS monitoring at deep-basin CO2 sequestration sites we need broader bandwidth borehole sensors (100 sec to 1 kHz) with up to 10 times the sensitivity of current conventional sensor arrays. Borehole sensors with these improvements would gain another order of magnitude of range and higher resolution on fracture creation events, informing permeability mapping models and contributing toward improved hazard assessment.
Because of the nature of subsurface heterogeneity, it is essential that we test deep CO2 monitoring technologies in a field-scale laboratory setting. Multiple acquisition geometries can be tested including borehole and surface seismic, with advanced optical sensing that can be compared to state-of-the-art electrical (geophone) sensors for both ambient (microseismic) and active-source monitoring.
Our work plan for this task is to adapt a high sensitivity, wide bandwidth 3-component sensor successfully tested in shallow boreholes, and develop a wireline-deployable system for deep near-basement borehole operations, incorporating a hybrid VSP/optical wireline cable and designing a 3-level 3C discrete optical sensor array suitable for deployment at depth for 4-6 weeks in a deep CO2 monitoring well at Aquistore active field site.
With special thanks to some of our sponsors, partners and collaborators
CCSMR Tasks have evolved over the years… here are some tasks from previous years:
- The Australian CO2CRC Otway Project
- Aquistore Collaboration
- Carbon Management Canada Field Research Station Collaboration
- Optimization framework for improved CO2 injectivity, storage permanence, monitoring, and utilization
- Mont Terri Project
- Cascadia Project – Discrete Fiber Optic Borehole Accelerometers
- US-Japan CCS Collaboration on Fibre-Optic Technology
- Fault-Leakage and Security
Prior to CCSMR
CCSMR related research began at the beginning of FY15. Some of the research being conducted under CCSMR is related to research that originated with tasks under the Consolidated Sequestration Research Project (CSRP) which wrapped up at the end of FY15.