The significance of caprock sealing integrity for CO2 storage

Andreas Busch, Alexandra Amann, Pieter Bertier, Margret Waschbüsch, Bernhard M. Krooss

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

27 Citations (Scopus)


The safe long-term storage of gas/CO2 in spatially limited underground volumes requires the combination of a structural trap with intact structural integrity and a suitable low permeability caprock (seal). The occurrence of natural gas reservoirs proves that certain lithotypes do provide efficient seals which can prevent leakage of gas to the atmosphere over long geological time periods (millions of years). In order to assess the risk of CO2 leakage through caprocks on top of potential storage sites to the surface one has to consider both, the present sealing capacity of the rock and its likelihood to alter in contact with CO2. The aim of this paper is to provide an overview of mechanisms affecting sealing integrity of intact (non-fractured/faulted) caprocks. Although certain caprocks can be suitable for hydrocarbons over geological time periods, CO2 in contact with the seal may pose additional risks. Depending on the lithofacies and the amount of reactive mineral species, CO2/water/rock interactions might alter the caprock, physical adsorption on organic matter or mineral surfaces will affect sealing integrity and interfacial properties will affect capillary entry and fluid transport behaviour.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSPE International Conference on CO2 Capture, Storage, and Utilization 2010
PublisherSociety of Petroleum Engineers
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9781617820830
Publication statusPublished - 2010
EventSPE International Conference on CO2 Capture, Storage, and Utilization 2010 - New Orleans, LA, United States
Duration: 10 Nov 201012 Nov 2010


ConferenceSPE International Conference on CO2 Capture, Storage, and Utilization 2010
CountryUnited States
CityNew Orleans, LA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


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