The inherent complexity of geoscientific work in the fields of radioactive waste management, geological carbon dioxide disposal and natural gas storage requires that wide range of scientific disciplines need to be employed. Such diversity, frequently considering radically different time-scales and often contradictory data sources can be extremely difficult to integrate in order to produce a single coherent and robust view of a engineered geological system. Such complexities are further compounded by the need to ensure that the geoscientific understanding being developed is directly suitable for the ultimate application. One of Quintessa's major strengths is the proven ability to perform such integrated thinking by taking a true 'top-down' perspective, while at the same time having the scientific expertise to support the details of scientific experiments and perform state-of-the-art numerical analysis.
The components that make up this general integration capability include:
- evaluating the confidence that can be placed in conceptual and numerical models for particular purposes using Evidence Support Logic;
- using both simple and complex numerical models to develop an understanding of systems and their controlling processes and parameters, for example QPAC, FEFLOW, COMSOL, GoldSim, AMBER;
- proven capability of providing feedback to site investigation programmes, engineering design and performance/risk assessment for example at Dounreay;
- extensive geoscience staff expertise in fields of physics, mathematics, chemistry, biology and numerical analysis;
- staff participation in range of international research programmes ensuring active contribution to, and full understanding of cutting-edge science in geoscientific disciplines (e.g. DECOVALEX, LCS, FORGE, FE Experiment at Mont Terri, FEBEX)
These core elements are applied to a range of issues including the geological storage of CO2 and other acid gases, radioactive waste disposal, natural gas storage and geothermal energy.