Feasibility Study of Heat Storage Capacity of Alberta Depleted Oil Sands Sedimentary Basins

Date and Time
October 22, 2020 12:00 PM (PDT)–01:00 PM (PDT)
The province of Alberta is home to one of the World’s largest strategic sedimentary basins. The Oil and Gas industry has been Alberta’s major source of economic prosperity for more than half a century. The oil sand deposits are the provinces biggest oil producers, and due to the nature of Bitumen and heavy crude oil residing in these basins, enhanced oil recovery techniques such as SAGD (Steam-Assisted Gravity Drainage) and VAPEX (Vapor Extraction) are required for heavy oil extraction. Geothermal is one of the most reliable and sustainable natural resources with little environmental impacts which can be exploited for power generation and heating applications. The geothermal heat generation potential of subsurface reservoirs depends on several factors such as thermal gradient, depth of deposition, and reservoir capacity and heat recovery. Although, not all sedimentary basins around the world are blessed with the geothermal potential, the subsurface reservoir formations could be used as a medium for thermal energy storage, known as GeoTES. By creating such synthetic geothermal reservoirs, the wasted heat from the surface can be stored and recovered when required, while decreasing the negative environmental impacts. In this study, the heat storage capacity of shallow formations, such as abandoned oil sands pads post SAGD operations has been evaluated. These systems will be assessed using reservoir simulation to evaluate the multiple factors affecting the heat storage capacity and recovery efficiency for geothermal heat storage. The reservoir simulation modeling will be performed with the following objective of determining the most appropriate thermal energy storage system design for Alberta. This study can be used to potentially improve the sustainability and efficiency of existing oil and gas infrastructure by utilizing the geologic stored heat for heating purposes or power generation and showing positive environmental impacts.
Session Code
Session Name
Geothermal Energy Associated w/ Oil & Gas