Efficient simulation of CO2 migration dynamics in deep saline aquifers using a multi-task deep learning technique with consistency

Mengjie Zhao*, Yuhang Wang, Marc Gerritsma, Hadi Hajibeygi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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CO2 sequestration and storage in deep saline aquifers is a promising technology for mitigating the excessive concentration of the greenhouse gas in the atmosphere. However, accurately predicting the migration of CO2 plumes requires complex multi-physics-based numerical simulation approaches, which are prohibitively expensive due to highly nonlinear coupled governing equations and uncertainties in heterogeneous spatial parameter distributions. To address this challenge, we developed an end-to-end deep learning workflow employing encoder–decoder architectures with residual network (ResNet) to efficiently predicts the spatial–temporal evolution of the solution CO2-brine ratio (Rs) and gas saturation (Sg) – the two essential tasks for quantifying the amount of trapped CO2 – given heterogeneous permeability fields as input. Specifically, we introduce a general multi-task learning with consistency (MTLC) framework to simultaneously predict Rs and Sg. The MTLC model leverages related tasks with less computational expensive labeled datasets to improve generalization ability. In our study, predictions for multiple tasks from the same permeability realization are not independent but expected to be consistent, as the proposed framework utilizes data-driven cross-task consistency constraints to augment learning of related tasks. Our deep learning model is trained based on physical trapping mechanisms, which play a dominant role in the CO2 migration process. The results demonstrate that the MTLC model with joint learning yields more accurate predictions and improved generalization for predicting CO2 migration in several test cases. Furthermore, our workflow is 105 times faster than a high-fidelity physics-based numerical simulator, making it a viable alternative for field-scale applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104494
Number of pages12
JournalAdvances in Water Resources
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • Deep learning method
  • Geologic carbon storage
  • Multi-task learning
  • Multiphase flow in porous media

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