A multiscale multilayer vertically integrated model with vertical dynamics for CO2 sequestration in layered geological formations

Bo Guo, Karl W. Bandilla, Jan M. Nordbotten, Michael A. Celia, Eirik Keilegavlen, Florian Doster

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21 Scopus citations


Efficient computational models are desirable for simulation of large-scale geological CO2 sequestration. Vertically integrated models, which take advantage of dimension reduction, offer one type of computationally efficient model. The dimension reduction is usually achieved by vertical integration based on the vertical equilibrium (VE) assumption, which assumes that CO2 and brine segregate rapidly in the vertical due to strong buoyancy and quickly reach pressure equilibrium. However, the validity of the VE assumption requires small time scales of fluid segregation, which may not always be fulfilled, especially for heterogeneous geological formations with low vertical permeability. Recently, Guo et al. (2014a) developed a multiscale vertically integrated model, referred to as the dynamic reconstruction (DR) model, that relaxes the VE assumption by including the vertical two-phase flow dynamics of CO2 and brine as fine-scale one-dimensional problems in the vertical direction. Although the VE assumption can be relaxed, that model was limited to homogeneous geological formations. Here we extend the dynamic reconstruction model for layered heterogeneous formations, which is of much more practical interest for saline aquifers in sedimentary basins. We develop a new coarse-scale pressure equation to couple the different coarse-scale (vertically integrated) layers, and use the fine-scale dynamic reconstruction algorithm in Guo et al. (2014a) within each individual layer. Together, these form a multiscale multilayer dynamic reconstruction algorithm. Simulation results of the CO2 plume from the new model are in excellent agreement with full three-dimensional models, with the new algorithm being much more computationally efficient than conventional full three-dimensional models.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6490-6505
Number of pages16
JournalWater Resources Research
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Water Science and Technology


  • CO2 sequestration
  • flow in porous media
  • multiscale modeling
  • vertically integrated model


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