We quantify the influence of the initial non-wetting phase saturation and porosity on the residual non-wetting phase saturation based on data in the literature and our own experimental results from sandpacks and consolidated rocks. The principal application of this work is for carbon capture and storage (CCS) where capillary trapping is a rapid and effective way to render the injected CO2 immobile, guaranteeing safe storage. We introduce the concept of capillary trapping capacity (Ctrap) which is the product of residual saturation and porosity that represents the fraction of the rock volume that can be occupied by a trapped non-wetting phase. We propose empirical fits to the data to correlate trapping capacity and residual saturation to porosity and initial saturation. We show that trapping capacity reaches a maximum of approximately 7% for rock porosities of 20%, which suggests an optimal porosity for CO2 storage. We present initial results from a super critical CO2-brine core flood experiment. Computer tomography imaging is used to quantify phase saturations within the sandstone core. We show that super critical CO2 is trapped within the core and that the mixing of super critical CO2 and brine is a key experimental procedure.


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