Recent Advances in Characterizing Depositional Facies and Pore Network Modeling in Context of Carbon Capture Storage: An Example from the Cambrian Mt. Simon Sandstone in the Illinois Basin
Abstract:In order to understand subsurface flow dynamics, including CO2 plume migration and capillary trapping, a diverse set of geologic properties within the reservoir, from the pore scale to the basin scale, must be understood and quantified. The uncertainty about site-specific geology stems from the inherent variation in rock types, depositional environments, and diagenesis. In collaboration with geocellular and multiphase modeling, detailed characterization of the Lower Mt. Simon Sandstone (LMSS), a reservoir utilized for carbon capture storage, is supporting data-driven conceptual models to better understand reservoir heterogeneity and its relationship to reservoir properties. This includes characterization of sedimentary facies and pore scale modeling of the reservoir
The Cambrian-age Lower Mt. Simon Sandstone (LMSS) is a reservoir utilized for two-different carbon capture storage projects in the Illinois Basin, USA. The LMSS is interpreted to have formed in a braided river environment comprising a hierarchy of stratification, with larger scale depositional facies comprising assemblages of smaller scale facies. The proportions, geometries, length scales, and petrophysical attributes of the depositional facies, and of the textural facies they comprise, are being quantified. Based on examination of core and analog outcrop in adjacent areas, the LMSS is comprised of five dominant depositional facies, the most abundant facies being planar to trough cross-bedded sandstones produced by subaqueous sand dunes. This facies has the best reservoir conditions with porosity up to 27% and permeability up to 470 mD. Three-dimensional pore network modeling via micro computed tomography of this facies shows well-connected and unobstructed pore throats and pore space. This presentation will outline the depositional heterogeneity of the LMSS, its relationship to diagenetic fabrics, and its influence on fluid movement within the reservoir.