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Van Tuyl Lecture: Michael Cardiff, University of Wisconsin
November 8 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Michael Cardiff, University of Wisconsin
Topic: The Challenges (and some solutions) for Predicting Flow and Transport in the Deep Subsurface
Abstract: The deep subsurface is increasingly being called upon to meet humanity’s growing water, energy, and waste containment needs. This zone – which for fluid flow purposes may roughly be defined as between 100 m and 5 km below land surface – represents a region where complex interactions between fluid flow, rock mechanics, and heat and chemical transport take place. Engineering applications as diverse as CO2 sequestration, hydraulic fracturing, liquid waste disposal, and geothermal energy extraction will all benefit from a more comprehensive understanding of this hard-to-access part of the Earth where observations are limited and expensive. In this talk, I will discuss field, experimental, and modeling techniques that can be leveraged to gain insights about properties and coupled processes in this environment. In particular, I will focus on technologies and experimental designs that hold promise for illuminating the vitally important permeability structure in difficult environments such as fractured or faulted rock. As an example, I will summarize recent work during the hydrogeophysical “PoroTomo” experiment performed at a 2 km-deep geothermal reservoir near Fernley, NV.