Hard-Rock Caverns

WSP has the experience and expertise to support hard-rock storage cavern projects at every stage, including feasibility, engineering, site preparation, drilling management, mining, and cavern conversion and pressure testing. Our flexible design approach allows us to adapt as needed to deal with actual geological conditions and keep the most complex projects on track.

A Leader in Conventionally Mined Storage Caverns

We've designed and constructed conventionally mined storage facilities for more than 60 years, whether developed in abandoned or depleted mines, or newly constructed in a variety of igneous, metamorphic or sedimentary rock formations. We have developed and streamlined many construction techniques that have set technical standards. We designed and constructed the majority of mined storage caverns in the U.S., in formations ranging from hard igneous and metamorphic rocks to softer shale and siltstone.

In many cases we are able to retrieve historical project records documenting cavern feasibility studies, original construction, investigations and inspections. This level of project documentation helps to reduce costs and save time. saves owner project costs and schedule.

Because we also provide services related to facility operations, we approach design engineering with a focus on constructability and operability. WSP has engineered and managed the drilling and casing of over 600 shafts with drilled diameters ranging from three to ten feet, for a cumulative drilled length of more than 580,000 feet.

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WSP has designed and constructed the majority of mined energy storage caverns in the U.S., in various rock formations. Learn more from our senior project engineer Frank Jurica.



Extensive Portfolio of Projects

WSP has designed and constructed mined caverns for the storage of LPG, NGL, petroleum products and feed-stocks, including several that operate at refrigerated temperatures. One unusual project involved converting a large salt mine to store 73 million barrels of crude oil. Our extensive experience includes design, drilling management, and cavern construction, conversion, testing and commissioning for a 1-million-barrel hard-rock liquid-butane cavern, and engineering-procurement-construction management services for a 1.4-million-barrel storage cavern constructed in shale at a depth of approximately 700 feet.

We have the experience and technical skills to deliver the most challenging hard-rock cavern projects successfully. Find out what we can do for you.