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To induce or not to induce: an open problem. Study on injection-induced seismicity for GeoEnergy applications, from lab to field scale

Applicant Rinaldi Antonio Pio
Number 160555
Funding scheme Ambizione Energy
Research institution Schweizerischer Erdbebendienst ETH Zürich
Institution of higher education ETH Zurich - ETHZ
Main discipline Other disciplines of Earth Sciences
Start/End 01.09.2015 - 30.11.2018
Approved amount 567'526.00
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Keywords (4)

real-time; induced seismicity; geomechanics; fluid flow

Lay Summary (Italian)

Lead
Studio della sismicità indotta per le geoenergie in Svizzera
Lay summary

Il progetto finanziato prevede lo studio della sismicità indotta da produzione energetica a diverse scale (laboratori, laboratori sotterranei, progetti pilota).

Il progetto sara’ dedicato in gran parte allo studio della teoria fondamentale legata alla sismica indotta. La teoria include studi su rate and state model, effetti idromeccanici sulle proprieta’ del mezzo, e criteri di riattivazione di faglie. Molto importante sara’ anche lo studio di come legare l’idromeccanica con quantità’ misurabili (e.g. magnitude massima, relazione magnitudo-iniezione, analisi statistiche qualitative).

Tutto questo sara’ studiato ad una scale che varia tra decine di cm (laboratorio) fino alla decina di metri (laboratori sotterranei), e diversi dati saranno disponibili in futuro per validare le teorie sviluppate grazie alla collaborazione con SCCER (Swiss Competence Center for Energy Resources).

Dati sperimentali includono: riattivazioni di faglia a laboratorio di Mont Terri (~10 m), esperimenti shear (~1 m), possibilmente riattivazione di faglia al laboratoro sotterrano del Grimsel, e possibili collaborazioni con esperimenti in laboratori francesi (Tournemire, LSBB). Infine il progetto prevede anche l’applicazione di campo delle teorie sviluppato, e questo può’ includere sia dati da test case (e.g. Basel, St. Gallen, Newberry, The Geysers) o scenari futuri per le geoenergie in Svizzera (e.g. energia geotermale e stoccaggio di CO2).

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 14.02.2019

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
Deep fracture zone reactivation during CO2 storage at In Salah (Algeria) – A review of recent modeling studies
Rinaldi Antonio P., Rutqvist Jonny, Vilarrasa Victor (2019), Deep fracture zone reactivation during CO2 storage at In Salah (Algeria) – A review of recent modeling studies, in Ferrari Alessio, Laloui Leslie (ed.), Springer International Publishing, Cham, 393-401.
Joint opening or hydroshearing? Analyzing a fracture zone stimulation at Fenton Hill
Rinaldi Antonio P., Rutqvist Jonny (2019), Joint opening or hydroshearing? Analyzing a fracture zone stimulation at Fenton Hill, in Geothermics, 77, 83-98.
Numerical Geomechanics Studies of Geological Carbon Storage (GCS)
Rutqvist Jonny, Rinaldi Antonio Pio, Vilarrasa Victor, Cappa Frederic (2019), Numerical Geomechanics Studies of Geological Carbon Storage (GCS), in Newell Pania, Ilgen Anastasia G. (ed.), Elsevier, Elsevier, 237-252.
Coupling TOUGH3 with FLAC3D for parallel computing of fluid flow and geomechanics
RinaldiAntonio Pio, RutqvistJonny, Blanco-MartinLaura, HuMengsu, SentisManuel (2018), Coupling TOUGH3 with FLAC3D for parallel computing of fluid flow and geomechanics, in Proceeding of the TOUGH Symposium 2018, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA, USA.
Modelling the effect of a gas phase during injection-induced fault reactivation
ZbindenDominik, RinaldiAntonio Pio, WiemerStefan (2018), Modelling the effect of a gas phase during injection-induced fault reactivation, in Proceeding of the TOUGH Symposium 2018, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Barkeley, CA, USA.
Modeling the effects of in-situ conditions on induced seismicity
Zbinden D., Rinaldi A. P. (2018), Modeling the effects of in-situ conditions on induced seismicity, in 52nd U.S. Rock Mechanics/Geomechanics Symposium, ARMA, Seattle.
The November 2017 Mw 5.5 Pohang earthquake: A possible case of induced seismicity in South Korea
Grigoli F., Cesca S., Rinaldi A. P., Manconi A., López-Comino J. A., Clinton J. F., Westaway R., Cauzzi C., Dahm T., Wiemer S. (2018), The November 2017 Mw 5.5 Pohang earthquake: A possible case of induced seismicity in South Korea, in Science, 360(6392), 1003-1006.
Effects of layered crust on the coseismic slip inversion and related CFF variations: Hints from the 2012 Emilia Romagna earthquake
Nespoli Massimo, Belardinelli Maria E., Anderlini Letizia, Bonafede Maurizio, Pezzo Giuseppe, Todesco Micol, Rinaldi Antonio P. (2017), Effects of layered crust on the coseismic slip inversion and related CFF variations: Hints from the 2012 Emilia Romagna earthquake, in Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors, 273, 23-35.
Effects of the distribution and evolution of the coefficient of friction along a fault on the assessment of the seismic activity associated with a hypothetical industrial-scale geologic CO 2 sequestration operation
Jeanne Pierre, Rutqvist Jonny, Foxall William, Rinaldi Antonio Pio, Wainwright Haruko M., Zhou Quanlin, Birkholzer Jens, Layland-Bachmann Corinne (2017), Effects of the distribution and evolution of the coefficient of friction along a fault on the assessment of the seismic activity associated with a hypothetical industrial-scale geologic CO 2 sequestration operation, in International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control, 66, 254-263.
Long-term thermal effects on injectivity evolution during CO 2 storage
Vilarrasa Victor, Rinaldi Antonio P., Rutqvist Jonny (2017), Long-term thermal effects on injectivity evolution during CO 2 storage, in International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control, 64, 314-322.
Modeling fault activation and seismicity in geologic carbon storage and shale-gas fracturing: Under what conditions could a felt seismic event be induced?
Rutqvist Jonny, Rinaldi Antonio, Cappa Frederic (2017), Modeling fault activation and seismicity in geologic carbon storage and shale-gas fracturing: Under what conditions could a felt seismic event be induced?, in SEG Technical Program Expanded Abstracts 2017, Houston, TexasSEG, Houston.
Fault Reactivation and Seismicity Associated with Shale-Gas Fracturing and Geologic Carbon Storage—A Comparison from Recent Modeling Studies
Rutqvist Jonny, Rinaldi Antonio P., Cappa Frederic (2017), Fault Reactivation and Seismicity Associated with Shale-Gas Fracturing and Geologic Carbon Storage—A Comparison from Recent Modeling Studies, in Sixth Biot Conference on Poromechanics, Paris, FranceASCE, Paris, France.
Modeling Ground Surface Uplift During CO 2 Sequestration: The Case of in Salah, Algeria
Rinaldi Antonio P., Rutqvist Jonny (2017), Modeling Ground Surface Uplift During CO 2 Sequestration: The Case of in Salah, Algeria, in Energy Procedia, 114, 3247-3256.
Current challenges in monitoring, discrimination, and management of induced seismicity related to underground industrial activities: A European perspective
Grigoli Francesco, Cesca Simone, Priolo Enrico, Rinaldi Antonio Pio, Clinton John F., Stabile Tony A., Dost Bernard, Fernandez Mariano Garcia, Wiemer Stefan, Dahm Torsten (2017), Current challenges in monitoring, discrimination, and management of induced seismicity related to underground industrial activities: A European perspective, in Reviews of Geophysics, (2), 310-340.
On the physics-based processes behind production-induced seismicity in natural gas fields
Zbinden Dominik, Rinaldi Antonio Pio, Urpi Luca, Wiemer Stefan (2017), On the physics-based processes behind production-induced seismicity in natural gas fields, in Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, 122(5), 3792-3812.
Fault reactivation induced by temperature and pressure changes in the life of a deep geological repository
Urpi Luca, Rinaldi Antonio P., Rutqvist J. (2017), Fault reactivation induced by temperature and pressure changes in the life of a deep geological repository, in 51st US Rock Merchanics/Geomechanics Symposium, American Rock Mechanics Association, San Francisco.
Inverse modeling of ground surface uplift and pressure with iTOUGH-PEST and TOUGH-FLAC: The case of CO2 injection at In Salah, Algeria
Rinaldi Antonio P., Rutqvist Jonny, Finsterle Stefan, Liu Hui-Hai (2017), Inverse modeling of ground surface uplift and pressure with iTOUGH-PEST and TOUGH-FLAC: The case of CO2 injection at In Salah, Algeria, in Computers & Geosciences, 108, 98-109.
TOUGH2-seed: A coupled fluid flow and mechanical-stochastic approach to model injection-induced seismicity
Rinaldi Antonio P., Nespoli Massimo (2017), TOUGH2-seed: A coupled fluid flow and mechanical-stochastic approach to model injection-induced seismicity, in Computers & Geosciences, 108, 86-97.
Dynamic simulation of CO2-injection-induced fault rupture with slip-rate dependent friction coefficient
Urpi Luca, Rinaldi Antonio P., Rutqvist Jonny, Cappa Frédéric, Spiers Christopher J. (2016), Dynamic simulation of CO2-injection-induced fault rupture with slip-rate dependent friction coefficient, in Geomechanics for Energy and the Environment, 7, 47-65.
Effects of asperities distribution on fluid flow and induced seismicity during deep geothermal exploitation
Rinaldi Antonio Pio, Urpi Luca, Karvounis Dimitrios (2016), Effects of asperities distribution on fluid flow and induced seismicity during deep geothermal exploitation, in Energy Procedia, 470-477.
Effects of in situ stress measurement uncertainties on assessment of predicted seismic activity and risk associated with a hypothetical industrial-scale geologic CO2 sequestration operation
Jeanne Pierre, Rutqvist Jonny, Wainwright Haruko M., Foxall William, Bachmann Corinne, Zhou Quanlin, Rinaldi Antonio Pio, Birkholzer Jens (2016), Effects of in situ stress measurement uncertainties on assessment of predicted seismic activity and risk associated with a hypothetical industrial-scale geologic CO2 sequestration operation, in Journal of Rock Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, 8(6), 873-885.
Fault activation and induced seismicity in geologic carbon storage - Lessons learned from recent modeling studies
Rutqvist Jonny, Rinaldi Antonio P., Cappa Frederic, Jeanne Pierre, Mazzoldi Alberto, Urpi Luca, Guglielmi Yves, Vilarrasa Victor (2016), Fault activation and induced seismicity in geologic carbon storage - Lessons learned from recent modeling studies, in Journal of Rock Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, 8(6), 789.
The importance of earthquake interactions for injection-induced seismicity: Retrospective modeling of the Basel Enhanced Geothermal System
Catalli Flaminia, Rinaldi Antonio P., Gischig Valentin, Nespoli Massimo, Wiemer Stefan (2016), The importance of earthquake interactions for injection-induced seismicity: Retrospective modeling of the Basel Enhanced Geothermal System, in Geophysical Research Letters, 43(10), 4992-4999.
Seismic and aseismic deformations and impact on reservoir permeability: The case of EGS stimulation at The Geysers, California, USA
Jeanne Pierre, Rutqvist Jonny, Rinaldi Antonio Pio, Dobson Patrick F., Walters Mark, Hartline Craig, Garcia Julio (2015), Seismic and aseismic deformations and impact on reservoir permeability: The case of EGS stimulation at The Geysers, California, USA, in Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, 120(11), 7863-7882.

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Rome Italy (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
GeoForschung Zentrum, Potsdam Germany (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
University of Roma, La Sapienza Italy (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
FS experiment group Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory United States of America (North America)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
COUFRAC2018 Talk given at a conference Fractured zone stimulation at Fenton Hill: hydroshearing vs elastic opening 12.11.2018 Wuhan, China Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
COUFRAC2018 Poster Seismicity induced by tunneling activity: hints from numerical modeling 12.11.2018 Wuahn, China Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
COUFRAC2018 Poster Modeling induced seismicity with a coupled fluid flow and stochastic-geomechanical model 12.11.2018 Wuahn, China Rinaldi Antonio Pio; Zbinden Dominik;
COUFRAC2018 Poster Semi-analytical modeling of Coulomb Stress Changes induced by seasonal variation at the Pertusillo lake, Val D’Agri (Italy) 12.11.2018 Wuhan, China Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
TOUGH Symposium 2018 Poster Modelling the effect of a gas phase during injection-induced fault reactivation 08.10.2018 Berkeley, CA, USA, United States of America Zbinden Dominik; Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
TOUGH Symposium 2018 Talk given at a conference Coupling TOUGH3 with FLAC3D for parallel computing of fluid flow and geomechanics 08.10.2018 Berkeley, CA, USA, United States of America Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
International Symposium on Energy Geotechnics SEG-2018 Talk given at a conference Deep fracture zone reactivation during CO2 storage at In Salah (Algeria) - A review of recent modeling studies 25.09.2018 Lausanne, Switzerland Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
European Seismological Community (ESC) 35th General Assembly Talk given at a conference Modeling induced seismicity with a stochastic-geomechanical simulator 02.09.2018 Valletta, Malta Zbinden Dominik; Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
52nd US Rock Mechanics/Geomechanics Symposium Talk given at a conference Modeling the effects of in-situ conditions on induced seismicity 17.06.2018 Seattle, WA, United States of America Zbinden Dominik; Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
European Geosciences Union (EGU) 2018 General Assembly Talk given at a conference Potential for permeability enhancement by hydroshearing: numerical modeling of a pressure experiment at Fenton Hill 08.04.2018 Vienna, Austria Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
European Geosciences Union (EGU) 2018 General Assembly Poster Numerical modeling of the induced seismicity during the deep geothermal project in St. Gallen, Switzerland 08.04.2018 Vienna, Austria Zbinden Dominik; Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
American Geophysical Union (AGU) Fall Meeting 2017 Talk given at a conference Numerical Modeling of Permeability Enhancement by Hydroshearing: the Case of Phase I Reservoir Creation at Fenton Hill 11.12.2017 New Orleans, United States of America Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
European Geosciences Union (EGU) 2017 General Assembly Poster Numerical modeling of tunneling-induced seismicity 28.04.2017 Vienna, Austria Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
European Geosciences Union (EGU) 2017 General Assembly Talk given at a conference On the physics-based processes behind production-induced seismicity in natural gas fields 28.04.2017 Vienna, Austria Rinaldi Antonio Pio; Zbinden Dominik;
European Geosciences Union (EGU) 2017 General Assembly Poster Hydro-mechanical modelling of induced seismicity during the deep geothermal project in St. Gallen, Switzerland 28.04.2017 Vienna, Austria Rinaldi Antonio Pio; Zbinden Dominik;
European Geosciences Union (EGU) 2017 General Assembly Poster Seismicity induced by CO2 injection: lesson learned from coupled hydro-mechanical modeling 28.04.2017 Vienna, Austria Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
2nd workshop on induced seismicity, Schatzalp 2017 Poster Hydro-mechanical modelling of induced seismicity during the deep geothermal project in St. Gallen, Switzerland 14.03.2017 Davos, Switzerland Zbinden Dominik; Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
2nd workshop on induced seismicity, Schatzalp 2017 Poster On the physics-based processes behind production-induced seismic- ity in natural gas fields 14.03.2017 Davos, Switzerland Zbinden Dominik; Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
2nd workshop on induced seismicity, Schatzalp 2017 Poster Seismicity induced by seasonal variation of reservoir level: the case of Pertusillo lake, Val D’Agri (Italy) 14.03.2017 Davos, Switzerland Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
2nd workshop on induced seismicity, Schatzalp 2017 Poster Modeling of earthquake interaction for induced seismicity 14.03.2017 Davos, Switzerland Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
Swiss Geoscience Meeting 2016 Talk given at a conference Coupled hydro-mechanical modelling of seismicity induced by gas production 19.11.2016 Geneva, Switzerland Zbinden Dominik; Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
88th Congresso della Societa Geologica Italiana Talk given at a conference Modeling fault reactivation induced by CO2 underground injection 07.09.2016 Napoli, Italy Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
European Seismological Community (ESC) 35th General Assembly Talk given at a conference Coupled hydro-mechanical modelling of seismicity induced by gas production 05.09.2016 Trieste, Italy Rinaldi Antonio Pio; Zbinden Dominik;
European Seismological Community (ESC) 35th General Assembly Talk given at a conference Numerical modeling of seismicity induced by large-scale CO2 injection in a multilayered sedimentary system, 05.09.2016 Trieste, Italy Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
European Geosciences Union (EGU) 2016 General Assembly Talk given at a conference Modeling stress/strain-dependent permeability changes for deep geoenergy applications 18.04.2016 Vienna, Austria Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
European Geosciences Union (EGU) 2016 General Assembly Poster Numerical modelling of production-induced seismicity in natural gas exploitation 18.04.2016 Vienna, Austria Zbinden Dominik; Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
European Geosciences Union (EGU) 2016 General Assembly Poster Effects of asperities distribution on induced seismicity and permeability during deep underground exploitation, 18.04.2016 Vienna, Austria Rinaldi Antonio Pio;
Swiss Geoscience Meeting 2015 Poster Fluid flow and induced seismicity affected by asperities distribution during geothermal exploitation 21.11.2015 Basel, Switzerland Rinaldi Antonio Pio;


Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
149428 Calibrating an indicative stress meter for the Earth crust 01.11.2013 Project funding (Div. I-III)
153931 Risk Governance of Deep Geothermal and Hydro Energy 01.11.2014 NRP 70 Energy Turnaround
157772 HighSTEPS : HighStrainTEmperaturePressureSpeed 01.10.2015 R'EQUIP

Abstract

In the last few years, major and damaging earthquakes were felt in regions supposedly affected by a low rate of natural seismicity. Such events have become an extremely important topic of discussion in both Europe and North America, since several major events were associated to industrial activities. The main focus of this proposed research is the study of induced seismicity during exploitation of natural underground resources. More specifically, this proposal focuses on one side on a detailed understanding of the deep fault and/or fractures reactivation associated with the fluid injection. On the other side, the proposed research plans to investigate the mitigation of large magnitude induced seismicity, which may pose at risk the affected population and structures, as well as acting as obstacle to the development of new techniques for the exploitation of deep underground resources. First I aim to understand the physics associated with the induced seismicity caused by anthropogenic activities. Secondly, the project aims to investigate in which conditions fluid-induced seismicity can be used as a tool. For example, the shearing process of fault and fracture, or the creation of new fractures, are needed to increase the permeability, and hence to enhance the fluid circulation at depth, eventually resulting in a more efficient energy production. However, such processes may, at the same time, produce seismicity that can be felt by local population. Open questions are:• How is the induced seismicity affecting the growth of a geothermal reservoir? When does it act as a potential seal breaching during storage operation? • Is it possible to use induced seismicity to develop a high permeability system, while constraining the earthquakes maximum magnitude? Or can a gas be stored in a safe (no seismic) way?Understanding the fundamental processes will help in finding new methods to safely extract energy, whose request nowadays is constantly increasing. I propose to address the above open questions by theoretical studies, laboratory, and applied field work. I plan to use data collected from on-going experiments (laboratory and in-situ) to improve numerical models. Numerical tools to be used include: thermo-hydromechanical modeling (THM), discrete fracture network (DFN), and statistical, as well as hybrid simulators. This research plan comprises of two phases. During phase I the numerical models will be calibrated in order to mimic and bridge processes inducing seismicity at different scale. Thanks to the unprecedented amount of data that will become available under the SCCER-SoE experiments umbrella and other closely related projects, I aim to:1. Use data from ongoing lab experiments at Rock Deformation Lab of the ETH Zürich (part of SCCER-SoE, project funded by SNF) to understand the shearing process of sample (up to 0.1 cm) during fluid injection by studying the acoustic emission and by evaluating the permeability changes during stimulation;2. Use data from ongoing deep underground laboratory for experiments on in-situ hydrofracturing (1 m) and stimulation of a 10 m scale region (DUG-deep underground laboratory, Grimsel, part of SCCER-SoE), as well as data from in-situ fault slip after injection of fluids (FS experiment, Mont Terri);3. Develop empirical relation for seismicity-permeability changes based on experiments, as well as implement physics-based model of fault reactivation and seismicity propagation to be included in the numerical modeling;4. Test the developed model on data from pilot projects (100s m) for both deep geothermal energy and CO2 sequestration, as well as model generic scenarios for application of deep underground GeoEnergy in Switzerland at reservoir scales (1000s m).Phase II will feature a novel concept for performing experiment, which has a large implication for future large-scale projects. The goal is to collaborate with the Rock Deformation Laboratory at ETH Zürich in planning a lab experiment coupled with numerical simulations, which update parameters of the experiments in real time to modulate the expected observables (e.g. seismic acoustic emission, fluid flow, and temperature).
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