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DGMK-Project Underground Storage Technology

SUBI - Safety of Underground Storage Facilities under Cyclical Load: Functionality and Integrity of Storage Facilities and Wells

01.07.2017 – 30.06.2020
Research Center
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
Technical University (TU) of Darmstadt
HS Merseburg
Helmholtz Centre Potsdam, German Research Centre for Geosciences
Piewak & Partner
Rock Laboratory Dr. Eberhard Jahns e.K.
Institute of Geomechanics (IfG)
Reason and Goal

In the course of the energy transition, the requirements for underground gas storage facilities (UGS) are increasing. Due to greater fluctuation in energy supply, these facilities should be designed for a higher frequency and, in some cases, amplitude of storage operations. The project therefore focuses on the influence of such cyclical loads on the geological and technical components and thus on the functionality and safety of underground gas storage facilities. In order to ensure the long-term protection of the protected assets, the underlying processes and mechanisms must be taken into account both qualitatively and quantitatively across all scales.
The aim of the project is to investigate the complex geomechanical processes that influence the reliability of underground gas storage facilities on a cross-scale and interdisciplinary basis. The effects of cyclical stresses on the technical installations and gas storage facilities in the regional stress field will be investigated in order to derive suitable operating modes for underground gas storage facilities.


A holistic, systemic approach is used to characterize the complex rheological properties via laboratory, pilot plant and field experiments in such a way that these can be used for verifiable system predictions via model calculations (THMC modelling and geomechanical considerations taking into account biological processes). Validation is achieved by comparing predicted and observed uplift and subsidence or deformation. This is intended to clarify the question of whether and how these can be used as an indication of aging phenomena in the sense of an early warning.

The project is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (funding code 03G0869)


The project has been successfully completed. The research report is available now.


Extended Abstracts

Dietl C, Braun R, Baumgartner H, Jahns E, Rudolph T. 2018. complex petrophysical studies to evaluate the safety of an underground gas storage in porous rocks. Search and Discovery, Article #80642

Dietl, C, Szech J, Baumgartner H, Jahns E. 2019. compressibility of reservoir and seal of a petroleum system from the Molasse basin: Poroelasticity as a useful indicator for material fatigue of an underground gas storage AAPG Europe Regional Conference: Paratethys Petroleum Systems between Central Europe and the Caspian Region

Dietl C, Rudolph T, Szech J, Baumgartner H, Jahns E 2019 Simulation of the aging of a pore space underground gas storage by compressibility testing. EAGE/DGMK Joint Workshop on Underground Storage of Hydrogen, 24 April 2019, Celle, Germany

Dietl, C, Baumgartner, H, Jahns, E. 2019. poroelasticity of a porous underground gas storage system: Is there material fatigue? DGMK Conference Report 2019-1: 369-380.

Project Status

Research Report
Project Coordinator

Dr. Susanne Kuchling

Head of the Geo-Energy-Systems and Subsurface Technologies Department


Federal Ministry of Education and Research