2016-03-10

Numerical models of the subsurface – applications and challenges

Prof. Dr. Andreas Henk, TU Darmstadt

26 Apr 2016, 17:00–18:30; Location: S4|10-1

The subsurface holds numerous resources ranging from groundwater and minerals to energy (e.g., geothermal, hydrocarbons), but it can also act as storage site for CO2 and nuclear waste. Any optimal and safe utilization of the deep subsurface requires a thorough understanding of the thermal, chemical, mechanical and hydraulic processes acting at up to 6 km depth, i.e. at pressures of 150 MPa and temperatures of 200°C. In the past decade numerical models have gained increasing importance in geoscience as a tool to study these processes and for scenario testing. Numerical modeling carried out in the Engineering Geology section at TU Darmstadt focuses primarily on mechanical and hydraulic aspects in order to study the evolution of stress and deformation in the subsurface during both geological history and planned future use.

Following a short introduction the talk will go through the standard work flow used for subsurface modeling based on finite element techniques and will present some case studies ranging from gas fields in northern Germany to a demonstration site for CO2 sequestration in Australia. These examples highlight the potential but also the current challenges for such numerical simulations, e.g., complex model geometries which have to be built from surface (faults and horizons) information derived from geophysical measurements, parametrization of the models based on sparse and very local borehole information which has to be upscaled and extrapolated to the model domain. Some measured data are usually available to constrain the numerical simulation results locally but a quantitative assessment of the model uncertainties and key parameters remains difficult.

Category: CE Seminar

Contact

Technische Universität Darmstadt

Graduate School CE
Dolivostraße 15
D-64293 Darmstadt

Phone+49 6151/16-24401
Fax -24404
OfficeS4|10-322

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