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DOE Funds Carbon Capture Projects

Carbon DioxideThe US Department of Energy has selected 13 projects to develop technologies and methodologies for safe and permanent geologic carbon capture and storage.

The total value of the projects is about $17.6 million over three years, with $13.8 million of DOE funding and $3.8 million of non-federal cost sharing.

The selected projects have been awarded in two areas of interest: geomechanical research and fractured reservoir and seal behavior.

Geomechanical research project awards include:

  • University of Wyoming: Studying the effects of CO2 storage on geomechanical, petrophysical and other reservoir properties.
  • Clemson University: Evaluating the feasibility of measuring and interpreting the physical state and properties of rock formations under stress.
  • University of Texas at Austin: Developing a geomechanical screening tool for reservoirs to assess geomechanical processes and conditions related to CO2 storage.
  • Northern Illinois University: Developing a risk assessment for a simulated industrial-scale CCS injection project.
  • Battelle Memorial Institute: Evaluating the stress-strain setting of the midwestern United States.
  • Pennsylvania State University: Studying the geophysical and mineralogical controls on fracture failure in induced seismic events.
  • Sandia Technologies: Developing geomechanical characterization methodologies by combining laboratory rock core testing with downhole tools that determine the strength of rock formations.
  • Montana State University: Studying the geomechanical conditions at the Big Sky Regional Partnership Phase III Kevin Dome large-scale field project.
  • Colorado School of Mines: Developing an approach to understand and predict geomechanical effects from large-scale CO2 injections with laboratory rock analysis and models.

Fractured Reservoir and Seal Behavior project awards include the following:

  • Princeton University: Developing new modeling capabilities for simulation of CO2 and brine migration in fractured reservoirs.
  • Colorado School of Mines: Developing tools to identify damaged shale caprock along with a method to determine CO2 migration through the caprock.
  • Washington University, St. Louis: Advancing the understanding of fractured basalt reservoirs and the impact basalt structure and chemistry has on flow and mineral trapping of injected CO2.
  • University of Texas at Austin: Developing and validating geomechanical models based on chemical-mechanical interactions to evaluate fracture growth at the reservoir-caprock interface.

The Obama administration has been making the argument for some time that carbon capture is a bankable technology.

In addition, large-scale carbon capture and storage projects worldwide are set to make significant progress this year, including two projects that will begin operations in North America.

Photo Credit: Power plant via Shutterstock

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