AG-849 Geological Constraints on CO2 Storage (5 ECTS)






Autumn semester (August), annually. Cancelled in 2023.

Karbon bergarter øverst, devon (rødt) nederst. September 2010.

Grade:Letter grade (A through F)
Course Cost:None
Course Capacity Min/Max:10/20 students (AG-349/849 in total)
Language of instruction:English
Examination support material:Bilingual dictionary between English and mother tongue

Contact person

Course requirements

Enrolment in a PhD program in geology, geosciences or petroleum geotechniques. The applicant must have documented relevant field experience.

Academic content

With large capacity to store CO2 offshore, Norway has an important role for the implementation of CCS on large scale in Europe. The offshore storage capacity has recently been mapped by NPD and published in the Norwegian CO2 storage atlases. One Atlas has been devoted to mapping storage capacity in the Barents Sea shelf. Possible storage reservoirs in the Barents Sea have undergone a complex story of burial and uplift, and many candidates are of limited extent, tight, fractured and with sealing or leaking faults.

Svalbard offers a 3D window into the Barents Sea reservoirs and provides excellent field sites for studying the typical Barents Sea carbonate and siliciclastic reservoir and seal rocks.

Learning outcomes

Students will get an introduction to the Longyearbyen CO2 storage laboratory and an overview of the regional and local Svalbard geology. This includes large-scale tectonics, main structural elements, and carbonate and siliciclastic sedimentology. The students will then get an introduction (update) to field geology and field methods. The main part of the course will be field excursions at various locations in the Billefjorden area and Deltaneset, studying structural elements and CO2 reservoir/seal characteristics. The students will finally learn work with Petrel and possibly printed maps to assess the storage capacity of selected North Sea or Barents Sea reservoirs.

Upon completing the course, the students will be able to:


  • understand the fundamentals of CCS, its interdisciplinary connections the ability to more widely appraise the role of CCS within the energy transition
  • understand storage plays (reservoir and seal systems), assess reservoir-seal quality from field observations and discuss challenges of CO2 storage in different settings
  • have insight into the local and regional geology of Svalbard and the Barents Sea and able to assess the CO2 storage potential of different traps


  • evaluate reservoir-seal systems from maps and field observations and calculate the storage capacity based on geophysical information and surface maps
  • compare storage plays based on various geological criteria with an understanding of CO2 phase behavior and trapping mechanisms
  • determine potential fluid migration pathways, perform structural de-risking of faults, and evaluate seal-integrity
  • select and perform basic assessment of CCS sites based on geological parameters
  • develop own ideas on full-scale evaluation of a CCS project and pathways to determine site integrity and validity, risk assessment and monitoring.

General competences

  • communicate complex ideas clearly, work as a part of a team, and write a scientific report.

Learning activities

The course extends over ca three weeks and is run in combination with AG-349.

Lectures include

  • introduction to CCS
  • introduction to the Longyearbyen CO2 laboratory and local/regional geology
  • reservoirs and seals storage plays
  • assessing CO2 storage capacity
  • fault and seal analysis / photogrammetry.


  • reservoir-seal system carbonate and siliciclastic reservoirs (structural elements, reservoir quality, local-regional extent of reservoir).

Laboratory work

  • analysing geophysical data and maps using printouts and/or computer exercises using Petrel to assess storage capacity of selected reservoir-seal systems
  • core logging.

Group work

  • Students will work in groups to solve specific topics to be decided, and each student will build on this in their individual final reports.


  • Total lecture hours: 13 hours.
  • Total seminar hours: 8 hours.
  • Total exercise hours: 8 hours.
  • Total post-course work: 20 hours.
  • Field excursions: 3 days.

Compulsory learning activities

All compulsory learning activities must be approved in order to be registered for the final assessment.

  • Indivial oral presentation based on article review
  • All excursions and fieldwork


MethodPercentage of final grade
Written report100%