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  • Writer's pictureRyan Pollyea

Fully Saturated & Flowing!

The Spring 2019 semester is now underway here at Virginia Tech, and Computational Geofluids Lab is back to full speed with plenty of new developments to share.

We're excited to welcome Cameron Chambers into the fold. Cameron is an undergraduate research assistant who will be working with us on the hydrogeology of injection-induced earthquakes. His research will update the geostatistical correlations that we published in Geology last year with data from 2017 and 2018, and perhaps include southern Kansas if we can get the wastewater injection data.

Wu Hao is nearing the finish line on her latest study interrogating the effects of permeability alteration during CO2 flow into basalt fracture networks. This work received high praise at the AGU conference in December, and her preliminary results are fascinating.

Grady just completed his conceptual model for the Arbuckle formation and underlying Precambrian basement in central Oklahoma and south-central Kansas (see image below). This model forms the basis for his MS research that will help us learn which geologic and fluid properties impose the most significant controls on fluid pressure accumulation during oilfield wastewater disposal.

And Rick continues publishing his CO2 sequestration research (one paper in review with another in the final stages of preparation). In the meantime, he is now working on a collaborative research project in the area of enhanced geothermal energy systems with colleagues at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab.

We're also excited to report that I received a one-year grant from the United States Geological Survey Earthquake Hazards Program. This project was scheduled to start on January 1, but the government shutdown seems to have slowed this down a bit. Nevertheless, our work continues with generous TA support from the Virginia Tech Department of Geosciences.

While 2018 was a great year for all of us in the Computational Geofluids Lab, it seems that 2019 is shaping up to be even better. The lab is nearing saturation with hard working and dedicated student-scholars, and the research is flowing. Many thanks to the VT Department of Geosciences and the United States Geological Survey for supporting our efforts!

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