Indexed on: 13 Jan '11Published on: 13 Jan '11Published in: Environmental Science & Technology
To ensure the viability of geologic CO2 sequestration (GCS), we need a holistic understanding of reactions at supercritical CO2 (scCO2)-saline water-rock interfaces and the environmental factors affecting these interactions. This research investigated the effects of salinity and the extent of water on the dissolution and surface morphological changes of phlogopite [KMg2.87Si3.07Al1.23O10(F,OH)2], a model clay mineral in potential GCS sites. Salinity enhanced the dissolution of phlogopite and affected the location, shape, size, and phase of secondary minerals. In low salinity solutions, nanoscale particles of secondary minerals formed much faster, and there were more nanoparticles than in high salinity solutions. The effect of water extent was investigated by comparing scCO2-H2O(g)-phlogopite and scCO2-H2O(l)-phlogopite interactions. Experimental results suggested that the presence of a thin water film adsorbed on the phlogopite surface caused the formation of dissolution pits and a surface coating of secondary mineral phases that could change the physical properties of rocks. These results provide new information for understanding reactions at scCO2-saline water-rock interfaces in deep saline aquifers and will help design secure and environmentally sustainable CO2 sequestration projects.