Imperial College London

Partner Description

Imperial College London (ICL) is a world-class university and the premier centre in the UK carrying out carbon storage research. ICL hosts the Qatar Carbonates Carbon Storage Research Centre (QCCSRC), a major 10-year collaboration between two departments at Imperial (Earth Science and Engineering and Chemical Engineering), Qatar Petroleum, Shell and the Qatar Science and Technology Park. QCCSRC hosts specialized labs, including the Qatar Complex Porous Media laboratory, which is dedicated to the experimental characterisation of flows and gas-solid equilibria in porous media, including reservoir rocks. Relevant expertise of the lab includes: (i) advanced reservoir core analyses for the description of CO2 storage reservoirs, focusing on sandstone reservoirs and recently extending to carbonate reservoirs; (ii) physics of fluid injection into the subsurface, with emphasis on the measurement of multiphase flow properties and transport parameters; (iii) characterization of gas trapping and phase behavior in microporous systems, including shale, under conditions relevant to CO2 storage.

Role in the Project

The lab will participate in the project by contributing with experimental work on the characterisation of geological and cementitious samples in terms of their sorption properties at representative (in-situ conditions). State-of-the-art experimentation will be used, including a Rubotherm Magnetic Suspension Balance that enables such measurements to be carried out at elevated pressures and temperatures and using a variety of gases (CO2 and light-hydrocarbons). A unique aspect to the work will be the deployment of a recently developed method that uses X-rays to image gas adsorption on core-samples. This will allow probing the entire pore space of the sample non-destructively, in addition to providing multidimensional information about the distribution of adsorption and microporosity, something that is not readily accessible by standard adsorption techniques. This comprehensive experimental data set will directly feed into the modelling work where adsorption isotherm measurements will be calculated and reconciled in terms of pore chemistry and pore size distribution.


Dr. Ronny Pini is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Chemical Engineering at ICL and the PI of the Qatar Complex Porous Media laboratory there. His research combines experiments and models at the laboratory scale to investigate fundamental physical mechanisms in porous media with application to CO2 sequestration (with or without hydrocarbon recovery), shale-gas and gas separation processes.