MicoSeismic Delivers Key Ethanol Plant CCS Monitoring Technologies

MicroSeismic, a leading provider of passive seismic technology, provides 24/7 underground monitoring of carbon capture and sequestration projects for interested ethanol producers.
By Katie Schhroeder | October 18, 2022

MicroSeismic CEO and geophysicist Dr. Peter Duncan has nearly two decades of experience working with passive seismic technology. “Passive seismic is imaging the earth without using dynamite or vibrators the way conventional seismic does, but just listening to the earth, the squishy sounds that come from the earth, to develop some knowledge of the interior,” he explains.

His company started out using this technology for enhanced oil recovery and later sinkhole detection. However, after winning a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy this year to develop technology for monitoring carbon capture and sequestration wells, the company has opened a new division called CO2SeQure for its CCUS focused services. This technology helps ethanol producers fulfill three key objectives for producers to qualify for tax credits and meet environmental regulations: monitoring, measurement and verification.

MicroSeismic’s BuriedArray® utilizes geophones equipped with wireless technology and cemented less than 300 feet underground to collect information about the sequestered CO2 and the geology surrounding it, allowing the producer to confirm that the CO2 plume is not moving outside the targeted formation, monitor caprock integrity to make sure that there are no cracks that would allow it to escape, and measure any microseismic events to make sure the injected CO2 is not causing any induced seismicity.

“I have been blown away by how big the pipeline is for projects, and how interested a broad cross-section of the industry is in understanding what we’re doing and how that can assist them in getting their permits to practice,” Duncan says.g Solutions