Addressing the issues
QCCSRC research addresses carbonate reservoir challenges that include:
- improved characterization and understanding of carbonate reservoirs
- future CCS in carbonate reservoirs
- enhanced oil recovery (EOR) techniques such as miscible gas displacement
- production of clean fossil fuels
Research is taking place on a number of levels, involving reservoir simulation and experimental studies at laboratory, pilot and field scales. QCCSRC aims to harness, integrate and optimize existing and evolving technologies to develop new approaches for extracting oil and gas and storing carbon dioxide in Qatar carbonate reservoirs.
The importance of such work for the State of Qatar is acknowledged in the Qatar National VIsion 2030 report 'Advancing Sustainable Development'.
Using innovative methods and cutting-edge facilities, the research team at Imperial College London are tackling these challenges through four key projects:
- Fundamental research applied to carbonate reservoirs and seals
- Carbonate reservoir pore/fracture-scale physics and chemistry
- Integrated simulator for carbonate reservoirs
- Integrated experiments and modelling
Geosciences Research - Our work includes fieldwork in Oman, UAE, Spain and the UK to help better understand the reservoir geology in the Middle East supplemented with laboratory work including the first application of clumped isotopes to reservoir descriptions
Rock-Fluid Research - There are researchers working on how fluids (e.g., carbon dioxide) flow through rocks of varying porosity and heterogeneity and we have built a dedicated imaging laboratory using X-Ray computer-aided tomography (CT) to observe the properties of carbon dioxide at reservoir conditions in an area of technology now known as “digital rocks”. There are a team of modellers and simulation experts that help make full use of the experimental data to help validate their predictive tools.
Thermo-Fluid Research - Our researchers are working on thermophysical and transport properties of fluids (i.e., phase behaviour, interfacial properties, viscosity, diffusion coefficient, density) are improving our understanding of how fluids behave in the reservoir. There are a team of modellers and simulation experts that help make full use of the experimental data to help validate their predictive tools.
Research groups and networks
QCCSRC incorporates Imperial's petroleum and chemical engineering expertise, from a number of different research groups and networks within two Departments in particular:
- The Department of Earth Science and Engineering focuses on describing petroleum reservoirs from the core scale upwards, traditionally for the sandstone reservoirs prevalent in the North Sea. QCCSRC is expanding this expertise to encompass carbonate fields, by applying Imperial's experience from other places to situations of specific interest in Qatar.
- The Department of Chemical Engineering has world class research expertise in CO2 reservoir processes: measurement and prediction of the properties of complex fluid mixtures including reservoir fluids; process and molecular systems engineering; multiphase fluid mechanics; separation processes; and hydrocarbon processing. These are being applied, inter alia, to new carbon capture and intensified hydrocarbon conversion processes.