A mathematical model of the footprint of the CO[subscript 2] plume during and after injection in deep saline aquifer systems
Author(s)MacMinn, Christopher W.; Juanes, Ruben
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We present a sharp-interface mathematical model of CO[subscript 2] migration in saline aquifers, which accounts for gravity override, capillary trapping, natural groundwater flow, and the shape of the plume during the injection period. The model leads to a nonlinear advection–diffusion equation, where the diffusive term is due to buoyancy forces, not physical diffusion. For the case of interest in geological CO[subscript 2] storage, in which the mobility ratio is very unfavorable, the mathematical model can be simplified to a hyperbolic equation. We present a complete analytical solution to the hyperbolic model. The main outcome is a closed-form expression that predicts the ultimate footprint on the CO[subscript 2] plume, and the time scale required for complete trapping. The capillary trapping coefficient emerges as the key parameter in the assessment of CO[subscript 2] storage in saline aquifers. The expressions derived here have immediate applicability to the risk assessment and capacity estimates of CO[subscript 2] sequestration at the basin scale. In a companion paper [Szulczewski and Juanes, GHGT-9, Paper 463 (2008)] we apply the model to specific geologic basins.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
MacMinn, Christopher W., and Ruben Juanes. “A Mathematical Model of the Footprint of the CO[subscript 2] Plume During and after Injection in Deep Saline Aquifer Systems.” Energy Procedia 1, no. 1 (February 2009): 3429–3436.
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