(736a) U.S. Doe Carbon Storage R&D Program: Advancing Carbon Storage Technologies Towards Commercialization

Mahajan, K. - Presenter, National Energy Technology Laboratory
Rodosta, T. - Presenter, National Energy Technology Laboratory
Vikara, D. M. - Presenter, KeyLogic Systems, Inc. - NETL

2015 AIChE Annual Meeting

Salt Lake City, Utah, U.S.A.

November 8-13, 2015


U.S. DOE Carbon Storage R&D Program: Advancing Carbon Storage Technologies Towards Commercialization

 Kanwal Mahajan1, Traci Rodosta1, Derek Vikara2

1 National Energy Technology Laboratory, 3610 Collins Ferry Road, Morgantown, WV 26507-0880, U.S.A

2KeyLogic Systems, Inc. National Energy Technology Laboratory, 626 Cochrans Mill Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15236-0940, U.S.A


Abstract: The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) continues to be a world leader in advancing carbon capture and storage (CCS) technologies towards commercialization. The Carbon Storage Program implemented by the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy and managed by the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) is helping to develop technologies that safely and permanently store carbon dioxide (CO2) without adversely impacting natural resources or hindering economic growth. Specifically, the Carbon Storage program is developing and advancing CCS technologies both onshore and offshore that will significantly improve the effectiveness of the technology, reduce the cost of implementation, and be ready for widespread commercial deployment. Since 1997, DOE’s Carbon Storage program has significantly expanded the CCS knowledge base in selected technology areas through a diverse portfolio of applied research projects and field demonstrations. The Storage program is comprised of three primary technology components: (1) Core Storage R&D, (2) Storage Infrastructure, and (3) Strategic Program Support. These areas work together to address significant technical challenges in order to meet program goals that support the scale-up and widespread deployment of CCS.

Core Storage R&D involves applied laboratory- and pilot-scale research focused on developing new technologies and systems for geologic storage, and encompasses three technology areas: (1) Geologic Storage Technologies and Simulation and Risk Assessment; (2) Monitoring, Verification, Accounting (MVA), and Assessment; and (3) Carbon Use and Reuse.

The Storage Infrastructure technology component is comprised of three technology pathways: (1) the Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnerships (RCSP) Initiative; (2) Characterization field projects (onshore and offshore); and (3) Fit-for-Purpose projects. All three technology pathways address the opportunities and challenges associated with the range of geologic formations potentially available for large-scale CCS development across the United States. The RCSPs include more than 400 distinct organizations, spanning 43 states and four Canadian provinces.   These partnerships form the core of a nationwide network developing the framework needed to validate geologic carbon storage technologies.  The RCSPs are actively involved in disseminating research information and public outreach, both domestically and internationally, by integrating research initiatives and lessons learned into Best Practices Manuals that highlight technical and nontechnical lessons learned from these field projects. The RCSPs also play an integral role in providing regional storage data to the National Carbon Sequestration Database and Geographic Information System (NATCARB) that provide an interactive visual representation of CCS potential in the United States. Additionally, the DOE Carbon Storage Atlas provides updates on CO2 storage resources and showcases research being conducted through the RCSP Initiative, with emphasis on large- and small-scale field activities. 

The Strategic Program Support component promotes an integrated approach to ensure that CCS technologies are cost-effective and commercially available. The program relies on research conducted by NETL as part of the national laboratory network to complement the program approach to reducing CO2 emissions. NETL research focuses on fundamental and applied fossil energy R&D, performed by Government engineers and scientists, and offers a venue for participation in collaborative research and provides an evaluation of new technol­ogy concepts, products, and materials.

CCS and other clean coal technologies can play a critical role in mitigating CO2 emissions while supporting energy security throughout the world. DOE’s Carbon Storage program has positioned the United States on a path toward ensuring that the enabling technologies will be available to address the demands of new regulations and impact CCS projects in the 2020–2030 timeframe. Continued U.S. leadership in technology development and future deployment is important to the cultivation of economic rewards and new business opportunities, both domestically and abroad.