CO2 Utilisation Research

CO2CRC are exploring the use of CO2 for commercially viable opportunities

Explore CO2CRC Utilisation research below

Carbon to products

At a small scale, CO2 is widely used in a range of commercial applications, ranging from the building industry, the food industry, agriculture, to firefighting and manufacturing.

CO2CRC will focus on dramatically lowering the cost of carbon-neutral chemical production from CO2

 

CO2 – Enhanced Oil Recovery

CO2 enhanced oil recovery (CO2-EOR) is a proven technology that has been used successfully for decades around the world, but not in Australia.

CO2CRC have conducted two significant studies into the potential of CO2-EOR in Australia

utilisation

Carbon to products

CO2CRC proposes to initiate a two-phased project that commences with laboratory screening and simulation studies to identify using CO2 and H2 to convert to a value add product. Subsequently, a field pilot scale plant will be designed and built to trial one or both technologies.

The research project

CO2 utilisation is becoming an increasingly important component of carbon management, especially for industries which produce CO2 but are not ideally located close to sequestration sites or carbon hubs or do not produce it on a sufficiently large scale for cost effective connection to a carbon hub.

In these cases, industry may choose to chemically “upgrade” CO2 to valuable products by using hydrogen, such as methane for injection into the natural gas distribution system or methanol for use as a fuel and many other bio-products; replacing fossil-fuel products.

While demonstration plants showcasing CO2 conversion exist abroad, there is no test facility in Australia to assess the application of CO2 conversion in the Australian context and understand the technical and economic drivers.

CO2CRC’s focus will be on dramatically lowering the cost of carbon-neutral chemical production from CO2 by improving the engineering design and operation of systems used in the process, including heat management, catalysis development, and integrated CO2 capture and CO2 conversion through process integration.

utilisation

CO2-EOR

The most common use for CO2 is for enhanced hydrocarbon recovery – whether oil or gas – to boost the amount of oil (or gas) recovered.

In CO2-EOR, a large portion of the injected CO2 remains below the ground. If the CO2 that returns to the surface is separated and reinjected to form a closed loop, this results in permanent CO2 storage.

CO2CRC have conducted two significant studies:

  • High-level screening of Australia’s geological basins for potential of enhanced oil recovery utilising carbon dioxide
  • Using CO2-EOR to reduce the energy sector’s green house gas emissions and improve oil recovery from Australia’s mature onshore oil fields.

High-level screening of Australia’s geological basins for potential of enhanced oil recovery utilising carbon dioxide 

The goal of this study was to compile all the relevant CO2-EOR data on Australian basins and develop a national integrated screening and ranking inventory that various stakeholders can use to gauge the broad potential for CO2-EOR in each basin.

CO2 enhanced oil recovery (CO2-EOR) is a proven technology that can improve the yield of oil over time and extend the life of oil fields. The addition of CO2 into the oil reservoir increases the overall pressure of an oil reservoir, forcing the oil towards production wells. The CO2 can also blend with the oil, improving its mobility and so allowing it to flow more easily.

In CO2-EOR, some portion of the injected CO2 remains in the subsurface. If the CO2 that returns to the surface is separated and reinjected to form a closed loop, this results in permanent CO2 storage.

Although CO2-EOR has been used successfully for decades around the world, it has not been deployed in Australia to date.

The mature fields in Australia that are in the later stages of their life offer significant potential in terms of immediate CO2-EOR development.

This project provides a publicly accessible, transparent, up-to-date inventory of the CO2-EOR potential in Australia, which will be a key input into decision-making for policy purposes and, vitally, as precompetitive information to attract industry investment.

Fourteen sedimentary Basins in Australia have identified petroleum resources, 10 of which were selected in this work and ranked for CO2-EOR feasibility in this study.

Each Basin was assessed based on the key parameters that influence CO2-EOR prospectivity: oil properties (API); pressure; temperature; reservoir quality (porosity, permeability, heterogeneity); availability of CO2 for EOR operations; and infrastructure to support EOR operations.

Additionally, broad estimates were made regarding the magnitude of the stranded oil and condensate resources that are available for targeting via CO2-EOR technology, as well as the amount of CO2 that could be stored through CO2-EOR in these Basins.

This project was funded by Low Emission Technology Australia (LETA). Geoscience Australia was the main project partner and CO2CRC provided project management services and technical peer review.

Using CO2-EOR to reduce the energy sector’s GHG emissions and improve oil recovery from Australia’s mature onshore oil fields

Through this project, CO2CRC have provided a landmark study that will help industry more readily and efficiently pursue CO2-EOR options in Australia. The Report provides insight to industry and government about potential opportunities around CO2-EOR, associated net CO2 storage, and high-level economics of the process at detailed field level for onshore Australian oil fields in the Cooper, Eromanga, Surat, and Bowen basins.

Outcomes

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CO2-EOR could be undertaken in 104 technically viable onshore oil reservoirs in the Cooper and Surat basins

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The results show that the mature oil fields of Australia provide an ideal setting for storing CO2. Additionally, these fields have a demonstrated seal (caprock) that has trapped oil and gas for millions of years. These fields also have a defined structure (closure) that constrains the movement and the areal extent of the CO2

Collaborate with CO2CRC

To discuss more about the results of these studies and utilisation research please contact CO2CRC

Level 2, 161 Collins Street
Melbourne VIC 3000
Australia

+61 3 8595 9600

info@co2crc.com.au

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