A Constrained Differential Evolution Algorithm for Reservoir Management: Optimal Placement and Control of Wells for Geological Carbon Storage with Uncertainty in Reservoir Properties

Tuesday, 16 December 2014
Abdullah Cihan1, Jens T Birkholzer1 and Marco Bianchi2, (1)Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Earth Sciences, Berkeley, CA, United States, (2)Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA, United States
Injection of large volume of CO2 into deep geological reservoirs for geologic carbon sequestration (GCS) is expected to cause significant pressure perturbations in subsurface. Large-scale pressure increases in injection reservoirs during GCS operations, if not controlled properly, may limit dynamic storage capacity and increase risk of environmental impacts. The high pressure may impact caprock integrity, induce fault slippage, and cause leakage of brine and/or CO2 into shallow fresh groundwater resources. Thus, monitoring and controlling pressure buildup are critically important for environmentally safe implementation of GCS projects. Extraction of native brine during GCS operations is a pressure management approach to reduce significant pressure buildup. Extracted brine can be transferred to the surface for utilization or re-injected into overlying/underlying saline aquifers. However, pumping, transportation, treatment and disposal of extracted brine can be challenging and costly. Therefore, minimizing volume of extracted brine, while maximizing CO2 storage, is an essential objective of the pressure management with brine extraction schemes. Selection of optimal well locations and extraction rates are critical for maximizing storage and minimizing brine extraction during GCS. However, placing of injection and extraction wells is not intuitive because of heterogeneity in reservoir properties and complex reservoir geometry. Efficient computerized algorithms combining reservoir models and optimization methods are needed to make proper decisions on well locations and control parameters. This study presents a global optimization methodology for pressure management during geologic CO2 sequestration. A constrained differential evolution (CDE) algorithm is introduced for solving optimization problems involving well placement and injection/extraction control. The CDE methodology is tested and applied for realistic CO2 storage scenarios with the presence of uncertainty in reservoir properties. Optimal placements of wells and selection of pumping rates are evaluated for different realizations of reservoir heterogeneity.