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Geomechanical Assessment of Caprock Integrity for Carbon Capture, Utilization and Storage Operations (CCUS)

Geological carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) is among the most promising emission reduction technologies today. Several CCUS projects are already in operation and many others have been announced all around the world from the US and Europe to China, Middle East and Australia. The main intention of CCUS projects is ensuring that CO2 remains underground for unlimited time since its leakage can result in different environmental, health and safety, economic and socio-political risks.

While different processes maybe responsible for the long-term trapping of CO2, hydraulic sealing of the caprock is considered the primary trapping mechanism. Therefore, evaluation of caprock integrity before, during and even after ceasing CO2 injection has critical importance for site selection, feasibility assessment, and operational optimization of the CCUS projects.

This talk will explore the fundamental principles of caprock integrity assessment for CCUS projects. It will review the geomechanical responses of the geological storage units and their surrounding rocks to the high pressure and low temperature of injected CO2.  Then it will explain how these responses may result in different hazard mechanisms that can threaten the integrity and sustainability of the CCUS projects. Finally, through different cases studies, it will review different elements of practical workflows for caprock integrity evaluation such as geomechanical characterization, coupled thermo-poro-mechanical modeling and field monitoring.

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Webinar Objectives

  1. To assist the attendees with identifying the hazards and risks that can threaten the integrity and sustainability of the CCUS projects
  2. To enhance the knowledge and skills of the participants in explaining the mechanical responses to CO2 injection and its adverse consequences
  3. To help the attendees to improve their understanding of the practical workflows for caprock integrity assessment for the CCUS projects

What Will Attendees Learn?

  1. Participants will gain the knowledge required for identify different risks and hazards associated with CO2 sequestration
  2. Participants will be introduced to the concept of stress change induced by pore pressure and temperature variation during CO2 injection
  3. Participants will learn about the mechanisms behind different geomechanical hazards   
  4. Participants will be able to identify the important geomechanical and petrophysical properties required for building geological characterization models for caprock integrity assessment
  5. Participants will learn about the concept of coupled thermo-poro-mechanical modeling and its different components
  6. Participants will be introduced to the common techniques used for monitoring caprock integrity

Who Should Attend?

This webinar will be valuable for decision makers, team and project managers, reservoir engineers, geologists and geoscientists involved with or interested in geological storage projects.

About the Presenter

Dr. Mehrdad Soltanzadeh is a geomechanics expert with over two decades of industrial and academic experience in different areas of geomechanics such as drilling, fracking, geological storage, in-situ thermal operations and integrated subsurface characterization. Examples of his recent works are development of hybrid data-physics analytics algorithms for optimizing the operations in unconventional plays and investigation of the role of progressive aseismic failure in fracking-induced seismicity. He is the director of PetroGem Inc., a company that provides consulting, training, and software solutions to the upstream oil & gas industry. Mehrdad holds multiple degrees in civil, geotechnical and geological engineering. Mehrdad has taught at multiple universities and he has been a Petroskills instructor since 2013. Mehrdad is a registered professional engineer and the author of several technical papers in reservoir geomechanics.


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