Carbon capture and storage

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  • The data consists of a poster presented at 'The Fourth International Conference on Fault and Top Seals', Almeria, Spain, 20-24th September 2015. The poster describes work carried-out on behalf of the 'Fault seal controls on CO2 storage capacity in aquifers' project funded by the UKCCS Research Centre, grant number UKCCSRC-C1-14. The CO2-rich St. Johns Dome reservoir in Arizona provides a useful analogue for leaking CO2 storage sites, and the abstract describes an analysis of the fault-seal behaviour at the site as well as at the UK Fizzy and Oak CO2-rich gas Fields

  • The RISCS (Research into Impacts and Safety in CO2 Storage) project assessed the potential environmental impacts of leakage from geological CO2 storage. Consideration was given to possible impacts on groundwater resources and on near surface ecosystems both onshore and offshore. The aim of the project was to assist storage site operators and regulators in assessing the potential impacts of leakage so that these could be considered during all phases of a storage project (project design, site characterisation, site operation, post-operation and site abandonment, and following transfer of liability back to the state). A secondary objective was to inform policy makers, politicians and the general public of the feasibility and long-term benefits and consequences of large-scale CO2 capture and storage (CCS) deployment. The Final Report can be downloaded from

  • Aqueous amine scrubbing was originally developed for natural gas treatment and is currently considered to be the current best available technology for post-combustion capture (PCC) of CO2 from both pulverised fuel (PF) and natural gas combined cycle (NGCC) power plants. A major issue is the severe thermo-oxidative degradation of alkanomaine solvents that occurs in PCC compared to natural gas processing, with the problem being compounded by the presence of acid gases that lead to the formation of heat stable salts (HSS). The accumulation of degradation products is known to reduce CO2 capture efficiency and cause excessive foaming and fouling and unacceptably high corrosion rates. Current measures to compensate for degradation involves purging spent solvent solution for reclaimation, makeup with fresh amine and the addition of anti-foam and oxidation/corrosion inhibitors. Reclaimer technologies based on distillation, ion-exchange and elecrodialysis have been developed to deal primarily with HSS where distillation has the advantage of removing both the HSS and their anions (i.e. formate and acetate). However, these technologies do not deal with the majority of the other degradation products, particularly those arising from thermal and oxidative degradation. Further, it has generally recognised that MEA forms high boiling polymeric material where N-(2-hydroxyethyl)-ethylenediamine (HEEDA), in particular, may continue to degrade in the presence of CO2 to form longer substituted ethlyenediamines. This proposal has been prompted by our extremely promising preliminary results that the thermal and oxidative degradation of an amine polymer (polyethyleneimine) can largely be reversed using both hydrogenation and hydrothermal (hydrous) treatments. We used non-catalytic hydropyrolysis and hydrous pyrolysis treatments at temperatures below 250oC which were clearly effective in reducing oxygen functionalities without causing any degradation of the polymer chain. The challenge is to partially reduce degraded amines to hydroxyamines and also, for polymeric forms, to induce some hydrogenolysis to reduce chain lengths. Hydrous pyrolysis has the potential advantage of not directly requiring hydrogen with water being the hydrogen source. Judicious choice of catalysts provides selectivity for hydrogenation and hydrogenolysis and research on amine degradation in natural gas sweetening has shown degradation products, such as N,N-bis(2-hydroxy-ethyl)piperazine and N,N,N-tris(2-hydroxyethyl)ethylenediamine, can be converted back to hydroxyamines by a hydrotreating reactions . •Directly targeting a high research priority identified by the RAPID Handbook, the proposed research aims to investigate novel reductive approaches for rejuvenating spent amine solutions from PCC plants, namely selective catalytic hydrotreatments at modest temperatures and H2 pressures and hydrous pyrolysis (hydrothermal conversion). The specific objectives are: 1.To apply the hydrogenation/ hydropyrolysis and hydrothermal treatments to individual compounds, including 1-(2-hydroxyethyl)-2-imidazolidone (HEIA), HEEDA, .N-(2-hydroxyethyl)acetamide and N-methylformamide 2.Based on the model compound results, to conduct experiments on actual fractions from degraded amine solvents, notably the residues from distillation containing HSS and the compounds targeted above; and 3.To use the results to define the overall benefits hydrogenation, hydropyrolysis and hydrothermal treatments in solvent rejuvenation and a basis for planning the subsequent research needed to take forward these new treatments, in terms of identifying how these treatments can best be conducted continuously. Grant number: UKCCSRC-C2-189.

  • Technical report, January 2016. Development of a Scottish CO2 Hub can unlock the potential for CCS in the UK and Europe by providing early access for CO2 captured in the North Sea Region to extensive, well-characterised storage in the Central North Sea (CNS) at low risk, while creating value through CO2 utilisation. Available for download at

  • In January 1993, as part of the Joule II Non-nuclear Energy Research Programme, the European Commission initiated a two year study of the potential for the disposal of industrial quantifies of carbon dioxide underground, with a view to reducing emissions to the atmosphere. The participants in the study were the British Geological Survey (UK), TNO Institute of Applied Geoscience (The Netherlands), BRGM (France), CRE Group Ltd (UK), IKU Petroleum Research (Norway), RWE AG (Germany), University of Sunderland Renewable Energy Centre (UK) and Statoil (Norway). The objective of the study was to examine whether carbon dioxide emissions from large point sources such as power stations, could be disposed of safely, economically and with no adverse effects on man and the environment. doi:10.1016/0196-8904(95)00308-8.

  • The purpose of Joule II Project Number CT92-0031 'The Underground Disposal of Carbon Dioxide' was to examine the potential for reducing CO2 emissions to the Earth's atmosphere from fossil fuel fired power plant by disposing of this CO2 underground. The report discusses whether this could be done practically, safely and economically, with minimal long term effects on man or the global environment. The report concentrates on the CO2 disposal process but also includes a detailed study of the technical and economic optimisation of CO2-removal in a lignite-fired IGCC power plant. The report is available for download at

  • The risks associated with the transport and injection of carbon dioxide are reasonably well understood and already borne in the USA. There is a remote possibility that CO2 disposed of underground could leak from a storage reservoir, either through an unidentified migration pathway or as the result of a well failure. The kind of threat that this might represent may be judged by comparison with naturally occurring volcanic CO2 emissions. Diffuse CO2 emissions through the soil or via carbonated springs in volcanic areas do not appear to represent a threat as long as the CO2 is able to disperse into the atmosphere. However, when CO2 is able to build up in enclosed spaces it poses a definite threat. Large CO2 clouds associated with sudden emissions from volcanic vents or craters also pose a lethal threat. However, there appears to be little analogy between such events and any possible leak from a storage reservoir via a natural unidentified migration pathway. Modelling of the development, migration and subsequent dispersal of any CO2 cloud which might arise from a well failure is recommended. doi:10.1016/S0196-8904(96)00276-2.

  • Technical briefing report, August 2013. This briefing summarises the most recent published report addressing the scope for CCS in European industry (ZEP, 2013), adds further information from public sources and gives some new analysis of the implications. Available for download at

  • This poster on the UKCCSRC Call 2 project Flexible CCS operations combined with online solvent monitoring: A pilot-scale study was presented at the CSLF Call project poster reception, London, 27.06.16. Grant number: UKCCSRC-C2-214. This project focuses on enhancing the flexibility of amine based post-combustion capture systems 1. To evaluate the flexible operation capabilities of current post-combustion CCS plant designs via dynamic scenario testing at pilot scale. 2. To identify hardware bottlenecks to dynamic operation and suggest improvements. 3. To develop new instrumentation, operating strategies and control systems which will enhance operational flexibility. 4. To obtain real plant data to complement dynamic modelling efforts.

  • This poster on the UKCCSRC Call 1 project Flexible CCS Network Development (FleCCSnet) was presented at the CSLF Call project poster reception, London, 27.06.16. Grant number: UKCCSRC-C1-40. The aim of the project was to carry out research to enable the production of design and operating guidelines for CCS pipeline networks in order that these networks can react effectively to short, medium and long term variations in the availability and flow of CO2 from capture plants and also to the constraints imposed on the system by the ability (or otherwise) of CO2 storage facilities to accept variable flow. The amount of CO2 captured at a power station is expected to become more variable in the future as the electricity grid brings in more and more intermittent renewable energy (meaning a conventional power station is temporarily not needed or in reduced operation as the renewable energy takes precedent). The storage site will also face periods of maintenance which will impose constraints on the flow into the store and it is also important to look at the case of upset conditions in order to be able to predict any potential problems. Solutions to these all these issues need to be factored into the design of the CCS network, the focus of the project was to identify the issues surrounding flexibility and explore some of them.