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Optimized CO2 storage in sloping aquifers (Upslope)

Sloping aquifers hold great potential for migration assisted CO2 storage. In the CO2-Upslope project the main objective is to improve reservoir characterization schemes and optimize storage. Coupled modelling is applied to estimate trapping efficiency and migration distances in order to adapt suitable injection schemes to ensure safe storage in open-boundary, prospective reservoirs.

Logo for Upslope, GEO, UiO

About the project

The CO2-Upslope project: ”Optimized CO2 storage in sloping aquifers” is funded by CLIMIT and scheduled to run for two years, starting in March 2017. We will challenge some common concepts in reservoir characterization for CO2 storage by re-evaluating proper methods for estimating storage volumes, including enhanced trapping efficiency during migration in sloping aquifers.

WHY: CO2 will dissolve in formation water with time and along upslope migration paths. The fraction of dissolved CO2 reduces the fluid pressure, thus improving the seal security, and has the potential to take part in mineral brine reactions. Enhanced dissolution and mineralization of CO2 in gently sloping aquifers may thus improve both storage capacity and security.

HOW: In evaluating the storage security of a sloping aquifer, we propose to estimate the reaction potential separately, and subsequently add the mineralization potential as a retardation factor, as opposed to commonly used reactive transport modelling approach. In this way complex geological geometries, suitable EoS and nuanced boundary conditions are included.


Case study: The Gassum Formation comprises fluvial to marginal marine sandy deposits. This sloping aquifer holds great potential for migration assisted CO2 storage. There is a need, however, to constrain the geology and diagenetic model on the Norwegian side.

  • Petrography and provenance studies
  • Stratigraphic correlation

Modelling approaches:

  • Seismic interpretation, geological facies modelling (Petrel/Schlumberger)
  • Topographic modelling (MRST-CO2lab/Sintef)
  • Multi-component, multi-phase flow (Eclipse 300/Schlumberger, MRST/Sintef)
  • Chemical reaction impact on plume migration and SAFT-type EoS (PFLOTRAN, PHREQ-C)

Outreach: We aim to build bridges for understanding between different scientific fields and prove the suitability of open and sloping aquifer storage schemes to decision makers and the general public.

Project outcomes:

  • Improved geological framework and better estimate of storage volumes in Gassum.
  • A near-shore storage solution for industrial emissions in Grenland?
  • Methodology for optimized storage in sloping aquifers: limit migration and pressure, maximise dissolution and mineralization.
  • More knowledge-based decision-making and public acceptance based on improved understanding of geo-chemical processes.


The CO2-Upslope project is funded by the CLIMIT-programme from the The Research Council of Norway, with grant number / project number 268512.

Gassnova SF and the Research Council of Norway collaborate on the CLIMIT-programme which finance projects within Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS).


This project is a joint study between the Department of Geosciences at UiO, Sintef Oslo and GEUS, Denmark.

The industry company Schlumberger is involved as discussion partner.

Affiliations in the Upslope project are*:

  1. Department of Geosciences and the FME-SUCCESS centre, University of Oslo, Norway
  2. Petroleum University of Technology, Iran
  3. Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS), Denmark
  4. Sintef Oslo, Norway

* The project partners are (alphabetical order):

Per Aagaard (1); Odd Andersen (4);  Irfan Baig (1); Peter Frykman (3); Ulrik Gregersen (3); Helge Hellevang (1); Rohaldin Miri (1, 2); Halvor Møll-Nilsen (4);  Lars Henrik Nielsen (3), Mette Olivarius (3); Anja Sundal (1**); Henrik Vosgerau (3) and Rikke Weibel (3)

** Project leader: anja.sundal @


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  • Andersen, Odd & Sundal, Anja (2019). Using 2D seismic line data to estimate impact of caprock morphology on CO2 migration in the Gassum formation. Full text in Research Archive
  • Gregersen, Ulrik; Baig, Irfan; Sundal, Anja; Nielsen, Lars Henrik; Olivarius, Mette & Weibel, Rikke (2018). Seismic interpretation of a slopping offshore potential CO2 aquifer; the Gassum Formation in Skagerrak between Norway and Denmark.
  • Gregersen, Ulrik; Baig, Irfan; Sundal, Anja; Nielsen, Lars-Henrik; Olivarius, Mette & Weibel, Rikke (2018). Seismic interpretation of a potential CO2 reservoir; the Gassum Formation, a sloping aquifer in Skagerrak between Norway and Denmark.
  • Olivarius, Mette; Sundal, Anja; Gregersen, Ulrik; Thomsen, T.B.; Weibel, Rikke & Nielsen, Lars-Henrik (2018). Using petrography and provenance data to assess the CO2 trapping potential in sloping sandstones in the Skagerrak Strait. EAGE extended abstracts. doi: 10.3997/2214-4609.201801148.
  • Sacco, Tatiana; Sundal, Anja & Hellevang, Helge (2018). Mass estimation of CO2 trapping potential in the Smeaheia reservoir.
  • Sundal, Anja; Hellevang, Helge; Olivarius, Mette; Miri, Rohaldin; Nielsen, Lars-Henrik & Gregersen, Ulrik [Show all 10 contributors for this article] (2018). Geological Constraints on the immobilization potential for CO2 in the Gassum Fm. (Skagerrak, Norway).
  • Andersen, Odd & Sundal, Anja (2017). Slik kan vi lagre CO2 under havbunnen for alltid. Aftenposten Viten. ISSN 2464-3033. Full text in Research Archive
  • Sundal, Anja (2017). KARBONLAGRING: Undergrunn + CO2 = trygt.
  • Sundal, Anja; Hellevang, Helge & Sacco, Tatiana (2018). CO2 trapping in the Smeaheia reservoir - time mass estimation using geochemical models. University of Oslo.

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Published Apr. 25, 2017 10:32 AM - Last modified June 27, 2022 11:28 AM