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Geology Department Postgraduate Web Pages

Name: Niamh Faulkner

Niamh Faulkner

Contact Details


T: @NiamhFlknr_Geo

Title of Project

TARGETing crystallisation for Enhanced Carbon Capture and Storage (TARGET-CCS).

Postgraduate research summary

In order to achieve the goal of the Paris Agreement of remaining well below the 2°C, ideally within 1.5°C, warming of pre-industrial revolution levels several gigatons of CO2 must be sequestered each year. Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) in geological formations will be essential to achieving this. The predominant form of CCS is in sedimentary reservoirs, notably exhausted oil reservoirs, however this method is prone to CO2 leaking back to the surface. Pumping CO2 dissolved in water into porous basalt formations results in the rapid precipitation of carbonate minerals and the permanent storage of CO2 over geological time.

Al-Carbonates are key minerals for carbon sequestration, however there is limited knowledge about the geochemical conditions under which they form and how to target the precipitation of them. This project will investigate how Al-carbonates form and how to ensure the stability of them. Being able to synthesize the minerals at (near)-ambient temperatures will make basaltic CCS more efficient, less energy intensive and more economically viable.

This research involves the synthesis of minerals from aqueous solution, and analysis using SEM-EDS, XRD, UV-vis spectrophotometry.

Name of supervisors

Dr Juan Diego Rodríguez-Blanco

Postgraduate personal details

Niamh graduated from Trinity College Dublin in 2018 with a Bachelors (Hons) in Natural Science, mod. Geology. She is an advocate for applying geological thinking to solving the climate crisis and is involved in various initiatives such as Girls into Geoscience and Sustainable Earth Scientist.

Project Start Date

1st September 2018


iCRAG/SFI-GSI: Environmental Geoscience Programme