School of GeoSciences

GREAT Cell Laboratory

GREAT: Geo Reservoir Experimental Analogue Technology. True triaxial experimental investigation of coupled thermo-hydro-mechanical-chemical processes in subsurface applications.

Great Cell 4

To investigate the coupled thermo-hydro-mechanical-chemical processes and their interactions relevant to industrial applications and geoenergy technologies, the GREAT Cell (Geo Reservoir Experimental Analogue Technology) has been designed and built in collaborations with Heriot-Watt and Gottingen Universities.

The GREAT cell (Geo-Reservoir Experimental Analogue Technology) is designed to recreate subsurface conditions in the laboratory to a depth of 3.5 km on 200 mm diameter rock samples containing fracture networks.

 

Great Cell 5

Secure and sustainable utilisation of the subsurface for low carbon energy applications such as CO2 storage, geothermal energy, unconventional hydrocarbons and energy storage requires the ability to understand, predict and monitor the physical response of the geo-reservoirs and the surrounding rock mass to changes in fluid pressure, stress, temperature, fluid composition and biological activity.

These physical responses are often described as combinations of thermal (T), mechanical (M), hydraulic (H), chemical (C), and micro-biological processes (B). All of these processes are interdependent to some degree, with feedbacks and degrees of coupling among themselves that depend on the particular situation and technology under consideration.

 

The GREAT cell (Geo-Reservoir Experimental Analogue Technology) represents an important new development in experimental technology, uniquely creating a truly polyaxial rotatable stress field, facilitating fluid flow through samples, and employing state of the art fibre optic strain sensing, capable of thousands of detailed measurements per hour.

 

Within the GREAT Cell laboratory the following facilities are available:

The GREAT cell

GREAT cell sample preparation

Synthetic GREAT cell samples

 

The team within the GREAT Cell Laboratory welcomes scientific collaboration and are always happy to discuss new projects and experimental designs.  Please contact:

Dr. habil. Christopher I McDermott

Reader in Hydrogeology and Coupled Process Modelling

  • School of Geosciences

Contact details

Address

Street

Grant Institute,
The King's Buildings,
James Hutton Road,

City
Edinburgh
Post Code
EH9 3FE

Dr. Andrew Fraser-Harris

Post Doctoral Researcher

  • School of Geosciences

Contact details

Address

Street

Grant Institute,
The King's Buildings,
James Hutton Road,

City
Edinburgh
Post Code
EH9 3FE

And for technical support please contact:

Alexander Lightbody

Technical Officer

  • School of Geosciences

Contact details

Address

Street

Grant Institute,
The King's Buildings,
James Hutton Road,

City
Edinburgh
Post Code
EH9 3FE