Event Title

Groundwater Modeling of the Uinta Basin, Utah as a Boundary Condition of the Birds Nest Aquifer

Location

Logan Country Club

Streaming Media

Start Date

3-28-2017 4:10 PM

End Date

3-28-2017 4:15 PM

Description

Accurate groundwater flow modelling is a prerequisite for accurate contaminant transport simulation. We are modeling groundwater flow in the Uinta Basin Aquifer, Utah, to eventually develop safe strategies for injecting saline waste water into the deep saline Birds Nest Aquifer (BNA). The Uinta Basin contains most Utah oil and gas production. Extraction of oil and gas brings very saline groundwater, a waste byproduct known as produced water. The Utah oil and gas industry in the Uintah Basin must dispose of large volumes of produced water. One technique for produced water disposal is deep injection employing repurposed oil and gas production wells and purposed disposal wells. A candidate formation for this deep injection is BNA, a high secondary-porosity and high secondary-permeability formation underlying part of the Uinta Basin Aquifer. Before addressing density-dependent flow and transport within the BNA, we are modeling flow in the Uintah Basin Aquifer that is hydraulically connected to the BNA. Previous groundwater studies modeled the Uinta Basin Aquifer as having a uniform thickness over a uniform base elevation. Our study utilizes more recent federal and Utah data and co-kriging to more accurately represent the aquifer’s top (elevation range exceeds 5000 feet), and thickness (ranges from about 100 feet to over 8500 feet). The Uinta Basin Aquifer model will provide boundary conditions for the BNA model. The resulting coupled models will better simulate flow and transport for U.S. and Utah agency planning.

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Mar 28th, 4:10 PM Mar 28th, 4:15 PM

Groundwater Modeling of the Uinta Basin, Utah as a Boundary Condition of the Birds Nest Aquifer

Logan Country Club

Accurate groundwater flow modelling is a prerequisite for accurate contaminant transport simulation. We are modeling groundwater flow in the Uinta Basin Aquifer, Utah, to eventually develop safe strategies for injecting saline waste water into the deep saline Birds Nest Aquifer (BNA). The Uinta Basin contains most Utah oil and gas production. Extraction of oil and gas brings very saline groundwater, a waste byproduct known as produced water. The Utah oil and gas industry in the Uintah Basin must dispose of large volumes of produced water. One technique for produced water disposal is deep injection employing repurposed oil and gas production wells and purposed disposal wells. A candidate formation for this deep injection is BNA, a high secondary-porosity and high secondary-permeability formation underlying part of the Uinta Basin Aquifer. Before addressing density-dependent flow and transport within the BNA, we are modeling flow in the Uintah Basin Aquifer that is hydraulically connected to the BNA. Previous groundwater studies modeled the Uinta Basin Aquifer as having a uniform thickness over a uniform base elevation. Our study utilizes more recent federal and Utah data and co-kriging to more accurately represent the aquifer’s top (elevation range exceeds 5000 feet), and thickness (ranges from about 100 feet to over 8500 feet). The Uinta Basin Aquifer model will provide boundary conditions for the BNA model. The resulting coupled models will better simulate flow and transport for U.S. and Utah agency planning.