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SENSE - Assuring integrity of CO2 storage sites through ground surface monitoring

SENSE is a research project funded under the ERA-NET ACT programme. Its primary objective is to demonstrate reliable, cost efficient CO2 storage monitoring using ground surface deformation detection combined with geomechanical modelling and inversion to provide information on pressure distribution and hydraulic behaviour of storage sites.

The goal of the SENSE project is to demonstrate how ground surface movement can be used as an integral part of the monitoring program to effectively verify safe storage of CO2 underground. The proposed research activities are focused towards injection demonstration sites both onshore and offshore and includes:

  1. demonstration of continuous monitoring of surface deformation and subsurface pressure distribution using satellite data, inclinometers, water pressure sensors, fiber optics and seafloor geodesy,
  2. develop advanced quantitative characterization of critical geomechanical and hydraulic parameters as well as automatization routine for data interpretation
  3. optimization of sampling arrays to provide cost-effective monitoring and long-term safety. 

The main findings will offer storage site operators a cost-effective monitoring option that can form part of an effective site assurance/monitoring program and feed into workflows to set up an early alert system for unexpected changes in the subsurface. Successful utilization of onshore surface heave data and correlation with geomechanical models has been demonstrated for the In Salah injection site.

Knowledge transfer

SENSE will provide knowledge transfer from the onshore demonstrations to offshore application. Both onshore and offshore applications will benefit new SMART (big-data-driven) integrated monitoring solution resulting from harnessing the potential of continuous data acquisition of surface movement. Through integrating different measurement solutions and different data types, an effective method for capturing major geomechanical changes in the reservoir and overburden will be demonstrated. 

Integration, optimization and automatization of existing technologies together with new fiber optic solutions for offshore surface movement detection has the potential for cost efficient and accurate monitoring. Hence, the SENSE project answers directly to the Priority Research Directions (PRDs) for CO2 storage, highlighted by Mission Innovation CCUS (2017), particularly: “Developing smart convergence monitoring to demonstrate containment and enable storage site closure” and “Realizing smart monitoring to assess anomalies and provide assurance.”

The SENSE project is organised in four work packages (WP).