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Growth of magnesian carbonates

 

Geological storage of CO2 leads to dissolution of reservoir minerals (primary phases) and the formation of new carbonate minerals (secondary phases) that immobilize and store carbon for geological time scales.

 

One priority within FME SUCCESS is to perform laboratory experiments to better understand the potential for secondary carbonate formation. To give predictive value, the experiments are done over a range of environmental conditions (temperature, pressure and aqueous chemistry).The results this far show that the CO2-mineral interactions are much more dynamic and complex than earlier believed.

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We have observed how initial growth of one carbonate phase can be replaced by a later phase in a predator-prey like system (1, 2), and how local chemical gradients, different from the bulk solution chemistry, controls the size and distribution of secondary carbonates at the mineral surface and in fractures (3, 4)We have observed how initial growth of one carbonate phase can be replaced by a later phase in a predator-prey like system (1, 2), and how local chemical gradients, different from the bulk solution chemistry, controls the size and distribution of secondary carbonates at the mineral surface and in fractures (3, 4)

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We have also observed , how primary phases such as silicates give rice to nucleation and growth of carbonates (5, 6), and how small variations in the bulk aqueous chemistry give rise to a large range in crystal size, shape, and distribution (7, 8).  

Read more about this this topic in Dagens Nærinsliv (norwegian only).

Text and pictures courtesy of Helge Hellevang, University of Oslo.

 

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