Center on Geo-processes in Mineral Carbon Storage (GMCS)

EFRC Director: Emmanuel Detournay
Lead Institution: University of Minnesota
Class: 2022 – 2026

Mission Statement: To develop the fundamental science and engineering capability that will lead to realizing the full potential for the large-scale subsurface sequestration of CO2 via mineralization

GMCS, an Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC) funded to the level of $11 million by the US Department of Energy, is focused on providing the science that will realize the potential for the permanent subsurface storage of carbon dioxide (CO2) through mineralization.  The center brings together five internationally renowned groups and 15 senior investigators with expertise spanning the multiple disciplines (damage and fracture mechanics, reactive transport and fluid flow, geochemistry, large-scale computations) needed to advance our fundamental understanding of the science and technology for permanent solid storage of CO2 in rock formations.

The key objective of GMCS is to arrive at the scientific understanding that will allow for determining the amount of carbon that can be permanently stored, for a given CO2 mineralization operation within a given subsurface reservoir:


This is accomplished by pursuing research along three interconnecting thrusts, using  laboratory experiments, analytical tools, and numerical simulations:

1. Reaction-driven cracking and fracture — aimed at elucidating the basic mechanisms affecting the process of carbon mineralization of mafic and ultramafic rock 

2. Dissolution and precipitation regimes — aimed at understanding how mineral carbonation processes are affected by the interaction between flow and the surrounding rock matrix

3. Continuum and discrete modeling of fracture networks  — aimed at developing capabilities to predict long-term capacity of a mafic or ultramafic reservoir for carbon storage and to design optimal solutions for reservoir stimulation

Examples of current research: