Pore-scale trapping of supercritical CO2 and the role of grain wettability and shape



[1] The capillary trapping of supercritical CO2 (s-CO2) is postulated to comprise up to 90% of permanently trapped CO2 injected during geologic sequestration. Successive s-CO2/brine flooding experiments under reservoir conditions showed that water-wet rounded beads trapped 15% of injected s-CO2 both as clusters and as individual ganglia, whereas CO2-wet beads trapped only 2% of the injected s-CO2 as minute pockets in pore constrictions. Angular water-wet grains trapped 20% of the CO2 but flow was affected by preferential flow. Thus, capillary trapping is a viable mechanism for the permanent CO2 storage, but its success is constrained by the media wettability.