Edinburgh, United Kingdom



Core Flood Rig

The RCCS coreflood rig allows high temperature (up to 150°C) and high pressure (up to 10,000psi) core flood experiments even for corrosive fluids like carbonated high salinity brines. The produced fluid levels are monitored automatically at reservoir conditions via a coupled acoustic separator. Accurate pressure drop measurement during single and multiphase flow tests by Quartzdyne pressure sensors helps measure accurate absolute and relative permeability measurements. The user friendly GUI of the automatic data acquisition helps monitor and record inlet and outlet core temperature and pressure. The outputs highlight important information about CO2 sequestration (e.g. trapping capacity, injectivity of specific rock types), relative permeability (two phase), water flooding (recovery factor and sweep efficiency), enhanced oil recovery (ultimate recovery). The rig is equipped with pulseless syringe pumps covering flow rate range of 100 to 0.001 ml/min. This equipment is newly installed, and is now commissioned and validated.

State of the Art, uniqueness & specific advantages

Core Flood Rig consists of a pressure control cart, an oven assembly and an electronics rack. The pressure control cart consists of three VPAs (which control the upstream flow, back pressure regulation and confining pressure), the external reactor assembly (which allows for mixing fluids under pressure and allows for refill of the in-oven accumulators), and the control panel (manually controls the reactor pressure). The oven assembly hosts the test components in a precisely controlled temperature environment, and includes the core holder (1,1.5 or 2” diameters, up to 12” long, hydrostatic type with 4 pressure taps), accumulator vessels (pumps fluids through core and separates corrosive test fluids from upstream pumping system), acoustic separator (ultrasonic analysis, dual cylinder design allows for measurement of the volume of fluids being discharged from the core), back pressure regulator (dome-loaded, flexible-diaphragm design), and an array of computer controlled valves. The electronics rack hosts the system electronics including the acquisition PC, uninterruptible power supply, the transducer and pneumatic interface control circuits, and the acoustic separator’s ultrasonic signalling and detection electronics.

Scientific Environment

The Research Centre for Carbon Solutions (RCCS) at Heriot-Watt University, is an interdisciplinary world-leading engineering centre, inspiring and delivering innovation for the wider deployment of technologies needed to meet necessary carbon targets. The RCCS occupy over 350 m2, across ten separate and interlinked laboratories, with dedicated high-end analytical research instruments and many bespoke in-house designed systems and rigs for advanced research and process development dedicated to research into Carbon Capture, Storage, Transport and Utilisation, in addition to facilitating several projects in the fields of Low Carbon System and Negative Emission Technologies. Along with facilitating our core research activities, the RCCS welcomes Academic and Industrial collaborators, and offers external contract analysis services.

Operating by

Heriot-Watt University

Heriot-Watt University
United Kingdom
STORAGE technologies:
Pressure/injection, Caprock/well integrity, Leakage mitigation/remediation, Reactivity/mineralisation, Static modelling, Dynamic modelling
Research Fields:
Fluid dynamics, Chemistry/Geochemistry, Geology/Geophysics, Modelling, Physical processes, Engineering
Facility's fact sheet

Location & Contacts

Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Dr Sean Higgins
RICC Contacts - Secondary contact
Audrey Ougier-Simonin

Facility Availability

Unit of access (UA)
Availability per year (in UA)
4 weeks
Duration of a typical access (average) and number of external users expected for that access
1 UA (week) per visit
Average number of external users expected for typical access

Quality Control / Quality Assurance (QA)

Activities / tests / data are
State of Quality: Equipment calibrated and validated by qualified staff using recognised industry standard techniques

Operational or other constraints

Specific risks:
Specialist research equipment will require qualified facility staff to operate, therefore access restricted to resource and staff availability. A risk assessment will be required prior to any work taking place in the facility. All external visitors will undergo a safety induction and be provided with written safety instructions.
Legal issues

CCUS Projects

Other CCUS Projects
Low carbon jet fuel through integration of novel technologies for co-valorisation of CO2 and biomass
Novel adsorbents applied to integrated energy-efficient industrial CO2 capture
Solar fuels via engineering innovation
CO2 injection and storage - Short and long-term behaviour at different spatial scales
Innovate UK
Next Generation Green Data Centres for Environmental and Business Sustainability

Selected Publications

TCCS10, Norway, Trondheim, 17-19 June (2019)
Pore-scale investigation of caprock-cement integrity for CO2 storage.
Jahanbakhsh, A., Bajwa, J. H., M, Farooqui, N. M., Maroto-Valer, M. M., Hadi Mosleh, M., Agrawal, H., Korre, A. & Durucan, S
the 10th Trondheim CCS conference, Trondheim, Norway, June (2019)
Effect of geochemical integrity of binding cement on sandstone permeability at carbon storage conditions.
Shahrokhi, O., Ghanaatian, S., Jahanbakhsh, A., and Maroto-Valer, M.M.
the 10th Trondheim CCS conference, Trondheim, Norway, June (2019)
Understanding reactive flow in porous media for CO2 storage applications.
Ghanaatian, S., Shahrokhi, O., G. Lopez, S., and Maroto-Valer, M.M.
GHGT14, Australia, Melbourne, 21-25 October (2018)
An investigation into CO2-brine-cement-caprock interactions for wellbore integrity in CO2 geological storage.
Jahanbakhsh, A., Recasens, M, Farooqui, N. M., Maroto-Valer, M. M., Hadi Mosleh, M., Agrawal, H., Korre, A. & Durucan, S