Maria Mastalerz
Geological Research at the IGS

Prediction of CO2 sorption in coal seams

Status Start Date End Date Locations
completed Oct 1, 2003 Sep 30, 2004 Outside Indiana, state
Director: Maria Mastalerz
Other Researchers:
Issue: With the introduction of progressively stricter emission laws in North America, there is an immediate need to assess and develop methods for disposal of environmentally problematic gaseous effluents from combustion of fossil fuels, especially carbon dioxide (CO2). An environmentally attractive concept is the underground disposal of effluents that are not subject to mining activity. Therefore, it is important to understand CO2 sorption characteristics of different coals.
Objective: The overall research goals are to: 1) Develop a reliable and practical method to measure CO2 sorption in coal in realistic temperature/pressure conditions; 2) Determine CO2 sorption characteristics in coals of specific rank, type, and lithotype structure; and 3) Evaluate how fast and how much of initially present methane (CH4) can be desorbed from coal during CO2 adsorption.
Approach: We developed instrumentation for testing methane and carbon dioxide on coal cores at temperature and pressure conditions corresponding to those in in-situ seams. Carbon dioxide was introduced to the coal and the duration of desorption/adsorption, volume of gas, and its composition was monitored.
Products: From this project: 1) Instrumentation will be developed to measure the volume of CO2 that can be introduced to a coal core; 2) A database will be created of adsorption/desorption characteristics of coals of different types; 3) A report will be produced comparing the adsorption/desorption characteristics of undisturbed coal to those of crushed coal.
Benefits: The project evaluated the extent to which adsorption and desorption characteristics, previously measured exclusively on crushed coal, can be used to predict the volume of carbon dioxide that could be sequestered in Indiana coal seams.

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