Measurement, Modelling and Verification of CO2 Storage (MMV)

  • £1m collaboration project to develop a marine monitoring system for underwater CCS sites
  • Monitoring system will use marine robotics to provide assurance CCS sites are secure
  • Project delivered by a consortium from academia and industry

The project will be led by Fugro GEOS in collaboration with Sonardyne, the National Oceanography Centre (NOC) and the British Geological Survey (both part of NERC), Plymouth Marine Laboratory and the University of Southampton. The ETI is to invest £1m in the first phase of the project.

Although there are existing technology components which can detect CO2 in a marine environment, there are no integrated, cost-effective and commercially available systems which can currently reliably record and report anomalies in the level of CO2 in the sea above a large store. The need to introduce capability for the robust monitoring of underground CO2 storage sites is in response to legislation such as the European Union’s directive on CO2 storage. This states that any storage operator must monitor for potential leaks and examine whether any leak is damaging to the environment or human health.

Current research and evidence shows that leakage is highly unlikely. However if CO2 did escape, it would be difficult to predict with certainty exactly where it would reach the seabed. This is where mobile autonomous robots are very useful, patrolling over large areas at relatively low cost.