World-class training for the modern energy industry

The Fundamentals of Business for the Energy Transition: A European Perspective (E908)

Tutor(s)

Ben Klooss: Camberwell Energy

Overview

The aim of this course is to provide an overview of key business aspects in relation to the energy transition. Two case studies will be used to frame the course learnings.

Duration and Logistics

Classroom version: A half-day course comprising a mix of lectures, case studies and exercises. The manual will be provided in digital format and participants will be required to bring a laptop or tablet computer to follow the lectures and exercises.

Virtual version: One 3-hour interactive online session (a morning in North America and an afternoon in Europe). A digital manual and exercise materials will be distributed to participants before the course.

Level and Audience

Awareness. The course is aimed at non-technical staff and those who do not have a business background but want a basic introduction to the topic. The subject matter will be covered from very basic principles and will be of interest to staff from a range of departments, including legal, graphics, administration and technical support, as well as the geoscience staff.

Objectives

You will learn to:

  • Understand the current global energy demand and how this will look in the future.
  • Recall the economic aspects of renewables.
  • Appreciate the mix and projected levels of current energy supply.
  • Describe the decarbonization targets for the EU and the overall scale of the energy transition that is required.

Course Content

This short course covers the key aspects of business for the energy transition and will give participants a fundamental understanding of the key aspects. Topics to be covered include:

  • Global energy demand and current and future projections by sector to 2050, with a focus on Europe – demand for electricity vs primary energy
  • Economic aspects of renewables (e.g. profitability, size of the application vs economics)
  • Global and European energy supply – current and projected levels of primary energy supply, including hydrocarbons, nuclear and renewables (e.g. geothermal, wind, hydrogen, solar and bioenergy). European estimates of domestically produced vs imported total primary energy
  • European climate policy objectives. Decarbonization targets for the EU and separately for the UK. The scale of the low-carbon energy transition that is required in Europe
  • Two case studies to illustrate opportunities, policy drivers and commercial factors: CCS in the Netherlands; and Hydrogen in the Netherlands. Each case study will discuss:
    • Specific market context to outline the scale of the opportunity
    • Policies, regulations and support instruments (i.e. carbon price, contract for difference, subsidies) directly affecting the particular business opportunity
    • Potential business models and commercial risks. This will include high-level descriptions of the factors determining business viability and profitability, as well as limiting factors

The Low Carbon Business for Operations Staff: Business, Geoscience and Engineering Fundamentals (E569)

Tutor(s)

Benjamin Klooss: Camberwell Energy

Gioia Falcone: Rankine Chair of Energy and Engineering, University of Glasgow;

Bob Harrison: Director, Sustainable Ideas Ltd

Overview

This course aims to provide a broad overview of notable non-technical and technical themes for those operations staff new to low-carbon business projects. The course will be divided into three principal themes: business, geoscience and engineering; and will look to combine knowledge from across the different low-carbon business streams (CCS, geothermal and hydrogen). Participants will come away with a broad knowledge of the business landscape and of the subsurface and operational engineering challenges and limitations.

Duration and Logistics

Classroom version: Three half-day sessions, totalling 1.5 days in-person classroom training.

Virtual version: Three 4-hour interactive online sessions presented over 3 days (mornings in North America and afternoons in Europe). In each case a digital manual will be provided for the participants.

Level and Audience

Fundamental. This course is aimed at production and surface engineering technical staff and managers with a background in oil and gas but limited exposure to the low-carbon business, who want an overview and appreciation of this new energy landscape, the skills required and the technical challenges.

Objectives

You will learn to:

  1. Outline the current and likely future status of the European energy mix, including new energy sources and the drive towards Net Zero.
  2. Understand the regulatory, policy and financial drivers for adopting these new energy sources.
  3. Apply learnings from oil and gas projects to the subsurface and engineering challenges posed by these new energy systems.
  4. Recall the basic principles of heat generation in the subsurface and the associated key characteristics of geothermal resources and reservoirs.
  5. Appreciate the risks and uncertainties in developing geothermal resources.
  6. Understand the subsurface requirements for CO2 storage and the associated leakage risk.
  7. Assess the volumetrics of CO2 storage and flow away from injector wells, as controlled by reservoir properties.
  8. Describe the different geological storage options for hydrogen, their capacity and storage integrity challenges.
  9. Appreciate how the handling of CO2, hydrogen and heat is different from oil and gas.
  10. Outline the different operational facilities requirements of new energy types, including design and lifetime.

Course Content

The course is split into three parts: business, geoscience and engineering.

Part 1: Business for the energy transition

  • Global energy demand, current and future projections by sector to 2050, with a focus on Europe. Demand for electricity vs primary energy
  • Economic aspects of renewables (e.g. profitability, size of the application vs economics)
  • Global and European energy supply – current and projected levels of primary energy supply, including hydrocarbons, nuclear and renewables (e.g. geothermal, wind, hydrogen, solar and bioenergy). European estimates of domestically produced vs imported total primary energy
  • European climate policy objectives. Decarbonization targets for the EU and separately for the UK. Scale of the low-carbon energy transition that is required in Europe. Discussion of circular economy within this context

This part of the course will be anchored around case studies to illustrate opportunities, policy drivers and commercial factors:

  1. CCS in the Netherlands
  2. Hydrogen in the Netherlands
  3. (Options) German commercial and industrial heat sector, UK offshore wind or UK rooftop solar

Each case study will discuss:

  • Specific market context to outline the scale of the opportunity
  • Policies, regulations and support instruments directly affecting the particular business opportunity in the case study country (for example, carbon price, contract-for difference, subsidies)
  • Potential business models and commercial risks. This will include high-level descriptions of the factors determining business viability, profitability and limiting factors

Part 2: Geoscience

  • Fluid properties and phase behavior of carbon dioxide, hydrogen and water, compared to hydrocarbons, at different operating pressures and temperatures. Flow assurance challenges of transporting and storing these fluids. Impact of impurities on fluid properties
  • Geothermal energy and summary of associated geoscience, including subsurface heat transfer processes, use of low- and high-enthalpy resources, and underground thermal energy storage. Exploration and appraisal of geothermal resources. Geothermal project risks and uncertainty from the subsurface perspective
  • Carbon geo-sequestration and the various trapping mechanisms that contain the injected CO2 underground. Subsurface storage site requirements, screening, selection, and estimation of CO2 storage capacity. Leakage risk and the design and implementation of appropriate monitoring. Lessons learnt from operational CCS projects from dedicated subsurface storage and CO2-EOR perspectives
  • Hydrogen – geoscience summary of natural hydrogen occurrences. Comparison of underground storage options (salt cavern, depleted hydrocarbon reservoir, aquifer) with comparisons of capacity, injectivity and productivity, inventory monitoring, challenges and risks

Part 3: Engineering

  • Geothermal – well types, completion design and operational challenges compared to hydrocarbons. Infrastructure considerations depending on end-use. Materials and engineering challenges posed by temperature, geochemical and microbial issues, and corresponding HSE aspects
  • CCS – well types and different needs to those of hydrocarbon production. Required infrastructure to handle, transport and inject CO2 effectively and safely, and meet industry norms and regulations
  • Hydrogen – the different ‘colors’ of hydrogen production, with respect to inputs and by-products, round-trip efficiencies, carbon footprint and HSE aspects. Requirements for wells and surface facilities to meet hydrogen duty needs and regulatory standards
  • Re-purposing of existing surface and subsurface infrastructure to help accelerate delivery of and reduce capital outlay for the energy transition. Review of each element in the supply chain from pipelines to facilities, via wells to the reservoir. Interdependency between reuse and decommissioning of infrastructure

The geoscience and engineering parts of the course will feature case studies from around the world to illustrate the challenges of treatment, transportation and underground storage for the new energy systems.

Principles of Subsurface Energy Storage (E564)

Tutor(s)

Prof Kevin G. Taylor: Professor in Energy Geoscience, University of Manchester, UK

Overview

The aim of this course is to give an overview of the requirement, and the range of subsurface solutions, for energy storage. It will cover the key aspects of energy supply and demand, the role that subsurface energy storage can play in addressing this, and the key role that subsurface energy storage will play in decarbonizing energy as a key part of the energy transition. We will cover the fundamental geological, technical, environmental and societal aspects of hydrogen storage, compressed air storage, natural gas storage and heat storage. We also will briefly cover emerging solutions, such as chemical subsurface storage and geo-batteries.

Duration and Logistics

Classroom version: A 1-day course comprising a mix of lectures, case studies and exercises. The manual will be provided in digital format and participants will be required to bring a laptop or tablet computer to follow the lectures and exercises.

Virtual version: Two 3.5-hour interactive online sessions (mornings in North America and afternoons in Europe). Some short exercises (e.g. handling some basic data, estimating energy storage capacity, etc.) will be undertaken within the course. In-course questions / polls will be included. A digital manual and exercise materials will be distributed to participants before the course.

Level and Audience

Fundamental. The course is aimed at technical staff from a wide range of backgrounds, and an understanding of specific subsurface geoscience / engineering will not be assumed. The subject matter will be covered from first principles and will be of interest to staff from a range of backgrounds, including geological, engineering and commercial.

Objectives

You will learn to:

  1. Understand the nature of energy demand and supply within the context of the energy transition and the necessity for energy storage.
  2. Recognize the different ways in which energy can be stored in the subsurface, including natural gas storage, hydrogen storage, compressed air storage and heat storage.
  3. Appreciate the specific geological and technical requirements for different energy storage solutions, along with examples of where these are being deployed.
  4. Appreciate the challenges around subsurface storage, including fluids, gas and geomicrobiology aspects.
  5. Be able to frame subsurface energy storage within environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations.

Course Content

This course covers the principles of subsurface energy storage and the critical role it will play in the energy transition.

Topics to be covered include:

  • Energy demand vs energy supply, especially intermittent renewable energy supply
  • Aspects of the subsurface that make for good energy storage
  • Natural gas storage, hydrogen storage, compressed air storage, heat storage (and cooling storage) and emerging ideas (such as geobatteries)
  • Geological factors to consider, including reservoir, seal, porosity / permeability and structures
  • Volume and energy storage potential for different storage solutions
  • Impacts of fluids and fluid chemistry upon storage efficiency
  • Geomicrobiology considerations: biofilms and corrosive gases
  • Interactions / integration of the subsurface with topside infrastructure
  • Environmental considerations of potential fluid / gas escape and pollution mitigations
  • Potential induced seismicity in subsurface sites and mitigations
  • Societal acceptance and social licence to operate
  • European and global examples

Lessons from Energy Transitions: Future Integrated Solutions that Sustain Nature and Local Communities (E557)

Tutor(s)

Gioia Falcone: Rankine Chair of Energy and Engineering, University of Glasgow

Bob Harrison: Director, Sustainable Ideas Ltd

Overview

This course considers the past and future energy transitions in the northeast of England, and their impact and legacy on the region’s industrial sector, local communities and nature conservation. It is hoped that lessons learnt from the past experiences in the region will help a sustainable energy transition. The course will cover CCS, hydrogen generation, wind and nuclear power, geothermal energy and the repurposing of legacy assets.

Duration and Logistics

A 4-day field course with site visits supported by classroom sessions. The course will be based in the town of Hartlepool, County Durham, to provide easy access to nearby coastal and inland locations.

Level and Audience

Fundamental. The course is intended for professionals working in energy transition, nature conservation and community engagement; those responsible for policy on energy and conservation matters; and energy sector investors.

Exertion Level

The course requires an EASY exertion level. Outcrops include coastal sections and inland exposures all with easy access. There will be some walks along beaches and easy paths through dunes with a maximum distance of around 5km (3 miles) or less.

Objectives

You will learn to:

  1. Describe and explain the overall potential of the region for integrated solutions with the context of the present energy transition.
  2. Characterize the locations of potential projects and explain technical factors that affect these and their feasibility.
  3. Describe how wider factors can affect feasibility of the projects including the environmental and social impacts.
  4. Evaluate strategic choices for local and regional policy makers, as well as landowners and investors.
  5. Make predictions and assessments of other regions in the UK for the potential development of similar projects.

Course Content

The UK has seen major energy transitions before – from wood to coal, from coal to oil, gas and nuclear, and now to renewable sources such as wind and geo-energy. In 2019, the UK was the first major economy to commit to achieving Net Zero by 2050, but this latest transition may prove the hardest to achieve so far, as the replacement sources have a lower energy density than those being substituted, and the existing fossil-fuel-based supply is constrained and exacerbated by recent geo-political events.

For example, it is claimed that developing CCS technology in the UK could reduce the cost of meeting the nation’s climate change obligations by up to £5bn each year. It is also claimed that thousands of jobs could be created through implementation of CCS hubs in Britain’s oldest industrial centres, but local content remains unclear.

The legacy of past energy interventions means this latest transition must not only supply ‘clean energy’, but also sustain our natural environment and local communities.

When discussing each element of the energy transition, we will try to put into context: the impact on the environment (traffic, emissions, noise, disruption to infrastructure); the number of jobs that may be created in the area; the impact on nature; the reduction of carbon footprint; and the risks and mitigations, etc.

Itinerary (tbc based on availability of sites)

Day 0 – Arrival in Hartlepool

At accommodation

  • ‘Setting the scene’ lecture on the need for energy transition, put into a global, nationwide, and local context

Day 1

Field visits: Seaham and Horden Nature Reserve

  • Coal – understand the impact, importance and history of the coal-mining industry for the region. Also, consider how its legacy may be used in the energy transition while helping to sustain and improve the natural environment of the area
  • Geothermal energy – an introduction with special mentions of heat pumps, mine water treatment and re-use of old oil and gas wells
  • Visit Dawdon Mine water treatment scheme in Seaham for geothermal heat source
  • Visit Horden Nature Reserve – from abandoned colliery with polluted dunes and beaches to part of Durham’s Heritage Coast

Day 2

Field visits: Hartlepool, Seal Sands and Greatham

  • Walk along North Sands to visit Bunter Sandstone outcrop in Hartlepool – discuss CO2 storage site selection, containment, capacity and injectivity; deep saline aquifers vs depleted gas fields; whether existing oil and gas infrastructure can be re-used for CCS
  • Visit ConocoPhillips Ekofisk oil terminal and refinery in Seal Sands
  • Visit Greatham to discuss Brent platform decommissioning (Able Ltd), also manufacturing and decommissioning of wind turbine parts

Day 3

Field visits: Greatham and Teesmouth

  • Visit the nuclear power plant in Greatham
  • Visit sites north and south of the river in Teesmouth Nature Reserve
  • View Redcar offshore wind farm from beach at Teesmouth or offshore visit

Day 4

Field visits: Saltholme, Wilton, Coatham and Redcar

  • Visit salt caverns in Saltholme (which also hosts an RSPB wildlife reserve) and at Wilton – such caverns could be used to store hydrogen
  • Gas terminal and processing plant at Coatham (CATS and Breagh gas field) – need natural gas (reformed with steam) to produce blue hydrogen
  • NZT development site – redevelopment of abandoned Redcar steel works
  • Local council – public acceptance, job local content and social license to operate

Day 5 – Departure and return home

Reservoir Characterization for Carbon Capture and Underground Storage, Devon and Dorset, UK (E556)

Tutor(s)

Professor Gary Hampson: Imperial College London, UK

Professor Matthew Jackson: Imperial College London, UK

Overview

This course provides a field-based overview of reservoir characterization relevant to carbon capture and underground storage (CCS) and focuses on widely exploited reservoir depositional environments and their associated heterogeneity. The course links geological heterogeneity observed in well-exposed outcrop analogues with flow and transport processes during CO2 injection and plume migration, and also discusses the characterization and modelling of heterogeneity using typical subsurface datasets. The concepts are illustrated using numerous practical examples.

Duration and Logistics

A 4-day field course with a combination of field activities and exercises, plus classroom sessions. A manual and exercise materials will be distributed to participants on the course. Transport is by small coach.

Level and Audience

Intermediate. The course is intended for professionals with experience of, or background in, a related subsurface geoscience area, and / or recent graduates in a relevant topic.

Exertion Level

This class requires an EASY exertion level. Field locations are mainly accessed by hikes of 1–2km (roughly 1 mile) across some irregular terrain, including sandy beaches, coastal paths and pebbly / rocky beaches.

Objectives

You will learn to:

  1. Describe and explain types of geological heterogeneity associated with reservoirs, storage units and aquifers developed in common depositional environments.
  2. Evaluate how these heterogeneities can be characterized and quantified in the subsurface and represented in static and dynamic reservoir models.
  3. Consider the impact of these heterogeneities on fluid flow and transport in the context of CO2 storage.
  4. Understand reservoir characterization requirements for the prediction of CCS.

Course Content

Subsurface reservoirs and aquifers have huge capacity and potential for CCS. Fluid flow and associated transport of species are central to plume migration and trapping efficiency. It is well known that geological heterogeneity plays a critical role in controlling flow and transport. Fit for purpose reservoir characterization is therefore essential to ensure reservoir behavior can be understood and predicted. However, fluid properties and flow behavior, and the types and abundance of subsurface data available for reservoir characterization, can differ widely for CCS projects. The course will link field observations with subsurface flow, transport and trapping mechanisms during CCS. Topics to be covered include:

  1. An overview of facies associated with fluvial, aeolian, lacustrine and shallow-marine clastic environments and shallow-marine carbonate depositional environments
  2. Types of heterogeneity associated with these facies
  3. Stratigraphic and structural controls on the distribution and organization of heterogeneity
  4. Types and scales of subsurface data available for reservoir characterization
  5. Strategies to capture key heterogeneities in reservoir models
  6. Effects of heterogeneity on fluid flow in the context of CCS

Outcrop exercises are used to demonstrate the topics listed above, and as a starting point for further discussion.

Itinerary (tbc based on availability of sites)

Day 0 – Arrival in Devon
At accommodation

  • Evening introduction and safety brief

Overnight in Exeter
Day 1
Field locations: Budleigh Salterton and Ladram Bay

  • Sherwood sandstone (Budleigh Salterton) – mixed fluvial and aeolian sandstones, faults
  • Sherwood sandstone (Ladram Bay) – fluvial sandstones

Overnight in Exeter
Day 2
Field locations: Seaton or Branscombe, Beer and West Bay

  • Mercia mudstone (Seaton or Branscombe) – lacustrine mudstones, seal
  • Chalk (Beer) – fine-grained carbonates
  • Bridport Sands (West Bay) – shallow-marine sandstones

Overnight in Weymouth
Day 3
Field locations: Isle of Portland

  • Portland limestone (Freshwater Bay, Isle of Portland) – limestones, evaporite seal (CCS analogue)

Overnight in Weymouth
Day 4
At accommodation

  • Wrap up

Departure and travel home

Structural Geology: Key Concepts for Resource Distribution and Prediction (E555)

Tutor(s)

Douglas Paton: Director of TectoKnow

Overview

Of central importance to all energy transition exploration and exploitation (geothermal, critical minerals, CCS, Radwaste, or hydrocarbon exploration) is an understanding of the subsurface in 3-D dimensions and how this geometry impacts the temporal and spatial delivery and retention of fluid. Two fundamental challenges exist: 1) datasets used in resource scale modelling require the application of conceptual models to aid the interpolation of often spatially limited or low-resolution data; 2) placing the resource scale concepts into a wider context to understand timing and controls on fluid delivery / retention. Addressing these challenges is the focus of this course, and being aware of the associated uncertainties is essential for resource exploration, appraisal and risking.

Duration and Logistics

Classroom version: A 3-day course comprising a mix of lectures, case studies and exercises. The manual will be provided in digital format and participants will be required to bring a laptop or tablet computer to follow the lectures and exercises.

Virtual version: Five 3.5-hour interactive online sessions presented over 3 days (mornings in North America and afternoons in Europe). Digital course notes and exercise materials will be distributed to participants before the course. Some exercises may be completed by participants off-line.

Level and Audience

Fundamental. The course is largely aimed at geoscientists who are working on subsurface projects where a wide-ranging understanding of structural geology concepts is required. The course content is targeted at those with a broad geoscience background but can be tailored for specific backgrounds and interests. The course can also be adapted for those with no or limited geological background who require the key concepts to be covered.

Objectives

You will learn to:

  1. Understand the fundamental importance of structural geology in modelling the subsurface within the context of the energy transition.
  2. Appreciate the concept of structural styles and why it is essential to aid the interpretation of subsurface and outcrop data.
  3. Assess input data required for resource modelling and appreciate its limitations.
  4. Apply relevant and appropriate models to areas of limited data or zones of complexity and capture the implications of the inherent uncertainty.
  5. Apply relevant techniques and understanding to enhance resource prediction in extensional, compressional and multi-phase settings, including salt.
  6. Appreciate the importance of developing a structural robust understanding for any energy transition resource model.

Course Content

The workshop will be practically based, supplemented by a number of group thought experiments. It will cover an introduction to the fundamentals of structural geology and

its impact on resource distribution and prediction. It will then outline, with examples, the essential geometric components

expected in normal faults / rift basins, reverse faults / contractional environments, inversion / multi-phase settings, and salt and strike-slip influenced systems. Case studies from across the energy transition will be used to illustrate the application of the concepts. Examples will include geothermal, critical minerals, conventional hydrocarbons, CCS, hydrogen storage and radwaste. The course is appropriate for geoscientists either within these specific industries or who are interested in developing skills and knowledge that are transferable across the themes setting them up for the future.

Case studies from across the energy transition will be used to illustrate the application of the concepts – examples are highlighted in the course summary but can be tailored to participants’ requirements.

  1. Review of key components of structural geology, including the importance of differentiating syn and post kinematic systems, stress and strain, and critically stressed faults
  2. Fault zone architecture and influence on retarding or inducing fluid migration; issues of scale and data representation
  3. Extensional systems – from normal fault geometry to rift basin and lithospheric extension
  4. Compressional systems – the challenges of reverse faults and how they interact to form larger scale contractional systems
  5. The importance of understanding multi-phase deformation
  6. Unravelling the complexity of strike-slip deformation
  7. Role of salt across the energy transition

Hydrogen Masterclass: Production, Geological Storage and Operational Engineering (E552)

Tutor(s)

Katriona Edlmann: Chancellor’s Fellow in Energy, The University of Edinburgh

Overview

Future energy scenarios foresee a prominent and growing role for hydrogen. Demand is likely to rapidly exceed the capacity of typical above-ground energy storage technologies, necessitating the need for the geological storage of hydrogen in engineered hard rock caverns, solution mined salt caverns, depleted gas fields and saline aquifers. This course will firstly provide participants with an overview of the current hydrogen landscape, including its likely role in the energy transition, production and economic challenges. The course will then focus on the need for geological storage, introducing the geological storage options available for the secure storage and withdrawal of hydrogen from these different geological stores. The main body of the course will then explore the key considerations involved in geological hydrogen storage including hydrogen flow processes and thermodynamics, geomechanical responses to rapid injection and withdrawal cycles, geochemical and microbial interactions during storage, and the operational considerations and monitoring of hydrogen storage sites that may impact storage integrity, withdrawal rates and hydrogen purity.

Duration and Logistics

Five 4-hour interactive online sessions presented over 5 days (mornings in North America and afternoons in Europe). Digital course notes and exercise materials will be distributed to participants before the course. Some exercises may be completed by participants off-line.

Level and Audience

Intermediate. The course is largely aimed at geoscientists, but engineers will also find the course instructive. Intended for sub-surface scientists, with an emphasis on geoscience topics. Participants will probably have a working knowledge of petroleum geoscience. However, the main subject matter of this course, the geoscience of hydrogen production and storage, is covered from basic principles.

Objectives

You will learn to:

  1. Appreciate the role of geoscience in the hydrogen economy and the contribution hydrogen can make to the energy transition in support of Net Zero emission targets.
  2. Describe the different processes involved with hydrogen production and the associated lifecycle carbon intensity of this production.
  3. Recall details of the developing hydrogen supply chains, including infrastructure considerations, distribution networks and pathways for market growth.
  4. Describe the different geological storage options available and their capacity and spatial constraints.
  5. Understand hydrogen as a fluid in the subsurface, including its thermodynamic and transport properties.
  6. Characterize the geomechanical considerations for storage integrity and associated risks, including caprock sealing considerations.
  7. Appreciate the impact of geochemical and microbial interactions in subsurface hydrogen stores and the relevant monitoring and management tools.
  8. Describe the operational engineering considerations and monitoring of hydrogen storage sites.

Course Content

Session 1: Background, the hydrogen landscape, production and economics

  • Role of hydrogen in the energy transition (is it more than the last 20% of clean power?)
    • energy storage to balance renewables
    • decarbonizing hard to abate sectors
  • Energy system integration
    • power to X
    • existing energy system overview
    • renewable energy and curtailment
    • grid scale energy storage requirements/challenges
  • Policy and regulatory landscape
    • policy drivers
    • legal and regulatory frameworks
    • licencing and permitting
    • safety standards and gas regulations
    • just transition
  • Existing / planned hydrogen projects globally
  • Hydrogen production – the full rainbow
    • natural hydrogen accumulations (white hydrogen)
    • methane (SMR), autothermal (ATR) reformation, partial oxidation (POX) or pyrolysis of hydrocarbons (grey hydrogen) and coal (brown/black hydrogen)
    • above with capture and secure geological storage of the CO2 (blue hydrogen)
    • electrolysis using renewable electricity (green hydrogen)
    • metabolic microbial processes using light energy to produce hydrogen from water
    • fermentation of biomass to produce hydrogen
    • pyrolysis or gasification of biomass
    • Photoelectrochemical Water Splitting
    • Solar Thermal Water Splitting (yellow hydrogen)
    • electrolysis powered by nuclear energy (pink hydrogen)
    • in-situ hydrocarbon combustion
    • methane pyrolysis to produce hydrogen and solid carbon (turquoise hydrogen)
  • Lifecycle carbon intensity of hydrogen production
  • Storing and moving hydrogen
    • properties of hydrogen as an energy carrier
    • pressures of hydrogen within the entire chain
    • storing compressed / liquid hydrogen (line pack – tanks – geological)
    • hydrogen carriers and adsorbents, including ammonia, liquid organic hydrogen, metal hydrides
    • pipelines
      • suitability to hydrogen (e.g. embrittlement)
      • hydrogen blending / de-blending
      • repurposed vs new systems
  • Costs and efficiency penalties
    • hydrogen production methods
    • cost, efficiency and infrastructure considerations in compression and liquification application
  • Developing hydrogen supply chains for a just energy transition (uses)
    • approaches to hydrogen market growth
    • scaling up
    • development of the hydrogen distribution and storge infrastructure
    • industrial clusters and hubs
    • hydrogen value chain
    • innovation and technology opportunities
    • hydrogen / carbon trading
  • Impact of increased hydrogen concentrations form fugitive emissions in the atmosphere
  • Assessment of critical mineral needs in batteries versus fuel cells

Activities include: Using the MacKay Carbon Calculator, create pathways to find out how we might reduce the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions to Net Zero by 2050 and beyond and highlight the opportunities for hydrogen; Estimate emission savings associated with a range of different hydrogen switching options.

Session 2 Options for the geological storage of hydrogen

  • Existing experience in underground gas storage operations
    • natural gas
    • hydrogen
  • Engineered rock caverns
    • technology description
    • design requirements (including geological requirements)
    • hydrodynamic sealing design principles
    • cavern construction and groundwater control
    • hydrogen injection and withdrawal operational procedures / considerations
    • hard rock cavern rock types / distribution / inventory
    • costs and safety considerations
  • Abandoned conventional mines / subsurface silos
    • technology description
    • design requirements (including geological requirements)
    • sealing / subsurface silos and groundwater control
    • hydrogen injection and withdrawal operational procedures / considerations
    • abandoned conventional mine distribution / inventory
    • costs and safety considerations
  • Salt caverns
    • technology description
    • design requirements (including geological requirements)
    • cavern construction
    • hydrogen injection and withdrawal operational procedures / considerations
    • salt cavern rock types / distribution / inventory
    • costs and safety considerations
  • Porous rock storage – aquifers
    • technology description
    • design requirements (including geological requirements)
    • hydrogen injection and withdrawal operational procedures / considerations
    • aquifer storage distribution / inventory
    • costs and safety considerations
  • Porous rock storage – depleted gas fields
    • technology description
    • design requirements (including geological requirements)
    • hydrogen injection and withdrawal operational procedures / considerations
    • aquifer storage distribution / inventory
    • costs and safety considerations

Activities include: Calculate volumetric capacities / energy densities of hydrogen under the different storage options; Using EU and global geological map viewers, geographical locations for the various hydrogen storage opportunities will be explored and evaluated within the context of existing energy infrastructures, renewable energy and industrial centres.

Session 3: Hydrogen flow and geomechanics

  • Thermodynamic and transport properties of hydrogen / Hydrogen P-T phase diagram
  • Thermodynamic and transport properties of hydrogen mixtures (water, CO2, N2, CH4 and natural gas)
  • Hydrogen transport properties (all storage types)
    • porosity (primary / secondary)
    • permeability and its influence on hydrogen injection and flow
      • absolute and effective permeability
      • permeability isotropy and anisotropy
      • homogeneity and heterogeneity
    • relative permeability
    • capillary entry pressure
      • pore size
      • interfacial tension
      • contact angle
      • wettability
    • advection
    • molecular diffusion
    • dispersion
    • diffusion
    • viscous fingering
  • Geomechanical considerations for storage integrity during cyclic injection
    • temperature changes during injection / withdrawal
    • pressure changes during injection / withdrawal
    • reservoir deformation
  • Caprock sealing potential
    • capillary pressure column height conversion
    • diffusive losses
    • stress / strain and hysteresis
      • injection / withdrawal pressures
      • stress state in the subsurface
      • failure mechanics
      • formation damage
      • faults and leakage risk
      • fractures and microfractures
    • drainage / imbibition
      • residual trapping

Activities include: Hydrogen column height calculations; Hydrogen caprock diffusion calculations; Hhdrogen contact angle calculations; Injection rate calculations for varying permeability.

Session 4: Impact of geochemical and microbial interactions

  • Hydrogen solubility and impact of pressure, temp, Ph and salinity
  • Geochemistry
    • range of minerals that may react with hydrogen and their associated lithology, e.g. Pyrite / pyrrhotite, anhydrite, hematite, clays, calcite, etc.
    • mechanisms and kinetics of redox reactions
    • kinetics of precipitation and dissolution
    • mineral reaction rates
    • reactions with well cements and casing
    • impact of geochemical activities
      • gas composition changes
      • dissolution of minerals and change in reservoir properties
      • souring and H2S
      • steel corrosion
    • geochemical impacts from experiences of hydrogen underground storage
  • Risks associated with microbial activities
    • microbes in the subsurface (what and where)
    • environmental parameters for microbial life
    • microbial hydrogen consumption processes
    • impact of microbial activities
      • gas composition changes
      • souring and H2S
      • microbial induced plugging or clogging
      • steel corrosion
      • dissolution of minerals and change in reservoir properties
      • impact of H leakage on soil and groundwater microbial communities
    • microbial activity impacts from experiences of hydrogen underground storage sites
    • microbial effects in salt caverns
    • recommendations on design, monitoring and management tools to manage microbial risks

Activities include: Classification of storage sites in terms of risks of mineral dissolution; Classification of storage sites in terms of risks of microbial consumption of hydrogen.

Session 5: Operational considerations and monitoring of hydrogen storage sites

  • Optimization of injection-withdrawal strategies
  • Cushion gas
    • role of cushion gas
    • implications of using different types of cushion gas on the effectiveness of storage operations
  • Analyses and assessments of potential interactions with existing (sub)surface usage and resources
  • Integrity of surface facilities and wells
    • evaluation of storage facility lifecycle
    • well cement integrity
    • suitability of materials for wells and surface facilities
    • storage facility operational parameters
    • safety and monitoring concepts
  • Risk of leakage through abandoned wells
    • abandonment completion assessments
    • leakage assessment
  • Risk of micro seismicity during cyclic injection and production operations
  • Monitoring strategies
    • geophysics: seismic / microseismic, electrical resistivity, etc.
    • monitoring wells
    • conventional monitoring: annulus pressure, radioactive tracer survey, casing inspection log, pressure test on the casing, neutron log, sonic detection, cement bond log, temperature log, spinner survey, pump and plug test, and camera inspection, etc.
  • Public perception

Activities include: Risk assessment of hydrogen leakage; Assessment of re-purposing depleted gas field for hydrogen storage.

Geoenergy Production, Injection and Storage Engineering (E546)

Tutor(s)

Gioia Falcone: Rankine Chair of Energy and Engineering, University of Glasgow

Overview

This course covers fundamental aspects and best practices of production, injection and storage engineering for different geoenergy applications, where the subsurface is used as a source (hydrocarbons, geothermal energy), or as a periodic/seasonal store (natural gas, compressed air, hydrogen, thermal energy), or as a sink (CO2, radioactive waste). The course focuses on an integrated system approach, to ensure compatibility between subsurface and surface engineering processes, and to understand scalability of technologies that may play a pivotal role in the transition to a sustainable energy future.

Duration and Logistics

Classroom version: A 3-day course comprising a mix of lectures, case studies and exercises. The manual will be provided in digital format and participants will be required to bring a laptop or tablet computer to follow the lectures and exercises.

Virtual version: Five 3.5-hour interactive online sessions presented over 5 days (mornings in North America and afternoons in Europe). A digital manual will be distributed to participants before the course. Some reading is to be completed by participants off-line.

Level and Audience

Advanced. The course is intended for geoscientists, geoengineers, project managers and regulators wishing to learn how to design, manage and monitor integrated geoenergy systems, from the subsurface to the surface (and vice versa), including the associated uncertainties and risks.

Objectives

YYou will learn to:

  1. Appreciate the different ways in which the subsurface can be exploited for different geoenergy applications.
  2. Bring together the different elements of a production/injection/storage geoenergy system towards integrated design and management.
  3. Identify the uncertainties and risks of different geoenergy projects over their lifetimes.
  4. Assess the impact of different operational requirements on overall system design and performance.
  5. Optimize system performance under constraints.

Course Content

The course includes integrated modelling demos for a selection of geoenergy applications and will cover the following topics:

  • Introduction to an integrated approach to geoenergy systems, from subsurface to surface (and vice versa)
  • Characterization of productivity/injectivity/storativity of the subsurface
  • Examples of wells, underground infrastructure and surface infrastructure designs for different geoenergy applications
  • Integrated flow modelling and reconciliation of boundary conditions
  • Flow assurance issues and system integrity over project lifetime
  • System analysis: linking the subsurface and the surface facilities, and identifying sources of uncertainties and risk
  • Short-, medium- and long-term asset optimization
  • Measurement, monitoring and in-perpetuity liabilities (where the subsurface is used as a sink)

Re-purposing Oil and Gas Infrastructure for the Energy Transition (E541)

Tutor(s)

Bob Harrison: Director, Sustainable Ideas Ltd

Overview

Attaining net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 will require strategies to use existing and emerging low- or zero-carbon technologies. One potential opportunity is to repurpose existing hydrocarbon facilities to help meet net zero targets in the UK. This course investigates the technical challenges around this topic and examines whether integrating such infrastructure could lower costs and accelerate the energy transition while simultaneously postponing the decommissioning of ageing assets.

Duration and Logistics

Classroom version: A 2-day course comprising a mix of lectures, case studies and exercises. The manual will be provided in digital format and participants will be required to bring a laptop or tablet computer to follow the lectures and exercises.

Virtual version: Four 3.5-hour interactive online sessions presented over 4 days (mornings in North America and afternoons in Europe). Digital course notes and materials will be distributed before the course. The tutor will also work through a series of exercises with the group

Level and Audience

Intermediate. The course is intended for professionals working in energy transition, those involved in energy policy and energy sector investors.

Objectives

You will learn to:

  1. Understand how repurposing hydrocarbon infrastructure may aid energy transition.
  2. Appreciate how the handling of CO2, hydrogen and heat differs from oil and gas.
  3. Select sites for potential underground storage and sources of geothermal energy.
  4. Determine the suitability and availability of infrastructure for re-use.
  5. Evaluate the pros and cons of using captured CO2 for enhanced oil recovery rather than storage.
  6. Appreciate how repurposed wells and co-produced water may help potential geothermal development.
  7. Characterize risks and uncertainties in energy transition projects and discuss possible mitigation strategies.
  8. Estimate potential cost savings from hydrocarbon infrastructure re-use.

Course Content

  • The integration of transport, utilization and storage operations of CO2 and/or hydrogen with reused offshore oil and gas infrastructure will be introduced.
  • As the properties and behavior of CO2 and hydrogen are different from those of oil and gas, their impact on operations will be discussed.
  • A workflow is presented to identify potential storage sites and suitable adjacent infrastructure in the North Sea. In addition, a cost benefit analysis of utilizing CO2 for enhanced oil recovery offshore is debated.
  • Moving into the geothermal sector, there will be an assessment of the potential for harvesting such energy more cheaply by reusing existing UK onshore wells and for harvesting the heat from water co-produced with oil.
  • Finally, the estimated operational risks and corresponding mitigations associated with repurposed hydrocarbon infrastructure are contrasted with the potential lowering of costs and postponement of abandonment expenditure outlay during energy transition.
  • Examples from the public domain will be reviewed to highlight some of the issues raised.

Fractures and associated Structural Concepts for the GeoEnergy Transition: a virtual field course (E511)

Tutor(s)

Richard Jones: Geospatial Research Ltd

Overview

Making extensive use of virtual outcrop technologies, this course will provide participants with a field trip itinerary that includes contrasting natural fracture networks from a wide range of rock types and structural settings. The course will combine fieldwork-based appraisal of fractures with collation and processing of different types of fracture data and their practical uses in GeoEnergy Transition applications.

Duration and Logistics

Classroom version: A 3-day course comprising a mix of lectures, case studies and exercises. The manual will be provided in digital format and participants will be required to bring a laptop or tablet computer to follow the lectures and exercises.

Virtual version: Five 3.5-hour interactive online sessions presented over 5 days (mornings in North America and afternoons in Europe). A digital manual and exercise materials will be distributed to participants before the course. Some reading and exercises are to be completed by participants off-line.

Level and Audience

Intermediate. The course is intended for geoscientists looking to understand the importance of fracture systems and to learn practical methods of appraising natural fracture networks. Target participants include geologists, geoengineers and hydrogeologists, as well as oil and gas professionals looking to apply their existing expertise in new sectors.

Objectives

You will learn to:

  1. Describe the geometry and morphology of individual fractures in outcrop, and interpret the mode of fracturing.
  2. Assess relative timing of fractures, and designate fractures to different sets.
  3. Supplement outcrop data with interpretation from aerial and satellite imagery.
  4. Characterize spatial properties of the fracture network, including spacing, clustering and scaling (size-intensity) relationships.
  5. Evaluate the nature of fracturing in relation to larger scale features: folds, faults and mechanical stratigraphy.
  6. Collate fracture data to produce a conceptual fracture model.
  7. Understand the interplay between fractures and matrix, in terms of porosity and permeability, and the implications for fluid storage and flow.
  8. Predict the general performance of a fracture network in practical GeoEnergy Transition applications.
  9. Recognize the strengths and limitations of different sources of fracture data, and the advantage of combining field data with other data types.

Course Content

The field-trip itinerary will focus on the following:

  • Introduction and overview – Fracturing in outcrop (and in relation to theory)
  • Practical description and measurement of fractures and fracture networks
  • Scaling relationships, upscaling and spatial heterogeneity
  • Collation of data into a Conceptual Fracture Model
  • GeoEnergy Transition case studies