Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) plays a vital role in climate change mitigation, yet enhancing CO2 injectivity into geological formations remains challenging. This presentation examines the potential of surfactants in addressing this issue. It starts with the initial hypothesis that surfactants can lower interfacial tension and modify wettability between CO2, brine, and rock, thereby affecting CO2 injectivity. Both experimental evidence and numerical simulations lend credence to these assumptions.
The research adopts a multi-scale and multi-methodological framework. We evaluate various surfactants for their capacity to reduce interfacial tension and modify wettability. The work extends to multi-scale flow experiments, embracing advanced techniques ranging from pore-scale analyses using synchrotron light source X-ray scanners and microfluidic chips to core-scale CO2 relative permeability assessments. Our findings suggest that surfactants can potentially enhance CO2 saturation and relative permeability, with some experiments showing a twofold increase in relative permeability compared to the baseline.
Towards the end, the presentation will touch on initial plans to explore the feasibility of surfactant-aided CO2 injectivity at the Otway International Test Centre (OITC).