Solute driven transient convection in layered porous media

Emmanuel Edet Luther, Seyed M. Shariatipour, Michael Dallaston, Ran Holtzman

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CO2 geological sequestration has been proposed as a climate change mitigation strategy that can contribute towards meeting the Paris Agreement. A key process on which successful injection of CO2 into deep saline aquifer relies on is the dissolution of CO2 in brine. CO2 dissolution improves storage security and reduces risk of leakage by (i) removing the CO2 from a highly mobile fluid phase and (ii) triggering gravity-induced convective instability which accelerates the downward migration of dissolved CO2. Our understanding of CO2 density-driven convection in geologic media is limited. Studies on transient convective instability are mostly in homogeneous systems or in systems with heterogeneity in the form of random permeability distribution or dispersed impermeable barriers. However, layering which exist naturally in sedimentary geological formations has not received much research attention on transient convection. Therefore, we investigate the role of layering on the onset time of convective instability and on the flow pattern beyond the onset time during CO2 storage. We find that while layering has no significant effect on the onset time, it has an impact on the CO2 flux. Our findings suggest that detailed reservoir characterisation is required to forecast the ability of a formation to sequester CO2.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEnergy and Sustainable Futures
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of 2nd ICESF 2020
EditorsPandelis Kourtessis, Amin Al-Habaibeh, Abhishek Asthana, Vladimir Vukovic, John Senior
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-63916-7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2021
Event2nd International Conference on Energy and Sustainable Futures - Online, United Kingdom
Duration: 10 Sept 202011 Sept 2020
Conference number: 2

Publication series

NameSpringer Proceedings in Energy
ISSN (Print)2352-2534
ISSN (Electronic)2352-2542


Conference2nd International Conference on Energy and Sustainable Futures
Abbreviated titleICESF 2020
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom

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  • Layered heterogeneity
  • Convection
  • Numerical simulations
  • CO2 storage
  • Climate change


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