DNA Tracer Test (S4CE)


DNA Tracer Test for Science for Clean Energy (S4CE)

In Brief

The Horizon 2020 project S4CE aims to develop, test and implement technologies needed for successfully detecting, quantifying and mitigating the risks connected with geo-energy operations in the sub-surface. The operations considered by this consortium include geothermal energy, enhanced gas recovery, carbon sequestration, and unconventional operations. The project includes fundamental studies of fluid transport and reactivity, development of new instruments and methods for the detection and quantification of emissions, micro-seismic events, and testing of cement casings. It will conduct both lab- and field-testing of new technologies, and it will deploy successful detection and quantification technologies in subsurface sites for continuous monitoring of the risks connected with sub-surface geo-energy operations. Within the scope of the S4CE consortium, Haelixa company is developing a new generation of DNA-tracers for subsurface fluid tracing applications, with DNA fragments encapsulated in silica particles. DNA - as a tracing platform - allows generation of a virtually unlimited number of unique fingerprints, enabling simultaneous tracing at multiple locations, or repeated tracer experiments without encountering background contamination. The DNA-tracer performance has been tested through both static and dynamic tests at lab scale. The suitability of the DNA tracers will be evaluated via field experiments at Bedretto Lab for the purpose of reservoir characterization.  


2017 - 2020

Project leader



This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 764810.