IUCRC Planning Grant, Pennsylvania State University: Center for CO2 Storage Modeling, Analytics, and Risk Reduction Technologies (CO2-SMART)

Project: Research project

Project Details


Geologic CO2 storage is a critical technology with enormous economic impact that can enable the global energy industry to meet their environmental, governance, and societal responsibilities. It will also help address climate change challenges while transitioning to renewable sources of energy. The magnitude of the economic impact of CO2 sequestration is unprecedented and there is strong buy-in from the federal government and the energy and other industrial sectors. This National Science Foundation Industry-University Cooperative Research Center (IUCRC) planning grant combines the expertise and power of talent and infrastructure of the University of Southern California and the Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) to create a 2-Site IUCRC. This combination of universities brings together geoscientists, data scientists, engineers, educators, and industry stakeholders to create a multi-sponsored research program designed to accelerate the development, adaptation, and deployment of novel technologies for improved modeling, continuous monitoring, imaging, analytics and risk assessment and mitigation for subsurface CO2 sequestration. Broader impacts of the activity will be to develop synergistic activities that address the highest priorities of the private sector in carbon sequestration to help them overcome hurdles preventing them from offering new and improved products and services. A major contribution of any Center that comes from this meeting will be workforce training in carbon sequestration and public outreach to local primary teachers and schools. The role of the Penn State Site in the planned IUCRC is to integrate advances in geophysics/geochemical technologies and data science algorithms to improve characterization of reservoir and caprock response to CO2. It will also investigate effective energy economics and policies to propose best-practices that companies can readily adopt to ensure the economic success of future GCS projects. The specific research areas to the Penn State Site include: real-time seismic monitoring from the lab to the field, CO2-fluid-rock interactions and transport dynamics in confined pore spaces, and fluid permeability/porosity imaging of CO2–induced permeability evolution. It will also apply Machine Learning enabled multi-physics modeling to upscaling and data assimilation and determine economic drivers for Geologic CO2 Storage. Penn State workforce training efforts will be to develop a diverse and inclusive educational and outreach program for training the next generation of engineers and scientists to generate a technical workforce with essential skillsets to successfully deploy and operate long-term geologic CO2 sequestration projects. Penn State will recruit students from Fort Valley State University and Lincoln University, two Historically Black Colleges and Universities, to bring diverse perspectives into the carbon sequestration workforce. Additional outreach will include providing field trips for fourth graders in Centre County, PA to the Minerals Museum at Penn State.This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.
Effective start/end date7/1/236/30/24


  • National Science Foundation: $20,000.00


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