CO2 Injection Effect on Geomechanical and Flow Properties of Calcite-Rich Reservoirs

Kiseok Kim, Victor Vilarrasa, Roman Makhnenko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Geologic carbon storage is considered as a requisite to effectively mitigate climate change, so large amounts of carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) are expected to be injected in sedimentary saline formations. CO 2 injection leads to the creation of acidic solution when it dissolves into the resident brine, which can react with reservoir rock, especially carbonates. We numerically investigated the behavior of reservoir-caprock system where CO 2 injection-induced changes in the hydraulic and geomechanical properties of Apulian limestone were measured in the laboratory. We found that porosity of the limestone slightly decreases after CO 2 treatment, which lead to a permeability reduction by a factor of two. In the treated specimens, calcite dissolution was observed at the inlet, but carbonate precipitation occurred at the outlet, which was closed during the reaction time of three days. Additionally, the relative permeability curves were modified after CO 2 -rock interaction, especially the one for water, which evolved from a quadratic to a quasi-linear function of the water saturation degree. Geomechanically, the limestone became softer and it was weakened after being altered by CO 2 . Simulation results showed that the property changes occurring within the CO 2 plume caused a stress redistribution because CO 2 treated limestone became softer and tended to deform more in response to pressure buildup than the pristine rock. The reduction in strength induced by geochemical reactions may eventually cause shear failure within the CO 2 plume affected rock. This combination of laboratory experiments with numerical simulations leads to a better understanding of the implications of coupled chemo-mechanical interactions in geologic carbon storage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number66
Number of pages17
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2018


  • Caprock integrity
  • Dissolution
  • Limestone weakening
  • Relative permeability
  • Rock stability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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