Berkeley, CA, United States
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Yip Y.H.,C12 Energy | Jeong H.,University of Texas at Austin | Fu S.,C12 Energy | Van Nierop E.A.,C12 Energy
Energy Procedia | Year: 2013

Natural gas storage that is, the use of a subsurface reservoir as a temporary storage site for natural gas is a well- established and proven mechanism of accumulating natural gas for future use. Similarly, temporary storage or buffering of CO2 involves injecting CO2 into a storage reservoir and subsequently recovering it for optimized deliverability of CO2 to enhanced oil recovery (EOR) operations. Since natural gas storage is the closest analogue to CO2 buffering, it is valuable to understand the similarities and differences between the two processes, so that we may draw useful insights for CO2 buffering from experience with natural gas storage. In this study, we simulate the injection and withdrawal of CH 4 and CO2 respectively in a saline aquifer, using an ensemble of geological realizations of an actual field with heterogeneously distributed rock properties. The results indicate that a formation that is likely to be suitable for CH4 storage is also likely to perform well as a CO2 buffering station, and vice versa. Due to its greater mobility, CH4 has a greater probability of reaching the target "pad gas" injection rates, but also of co-producing more water upon production of the "working gas". For those geologic realizations that accepted the target pad gas injection, subsequent recovery of gas (whether CO2 or CH4) was also good. Hysteresis plots (reservoir pressure as a function of gas inventory) indicate that the spatial extent of the gas "bubble" stabilizes after about 5 years of cycling gas injection/production, leading to associated stabilized deliverability of the storage site over time.

Baclig A.C.,C12 Energy | Van Nierop E.A.,C12 Energy | Brankman C.M.,C12 Energy | Selover R.W.,C12 Energy | And 2 more authors.
Energy Procedia | Year: 2011

CCS projects that can bring together all pieces of the system-capture, transport, and storage-at the lowest cost will likely be the first to become operational. We have modeled the cost per tonne of CO2 of a geologic sequestration system that stores CO2 in saline aquifers in the United States. The model includes aspects of capture, transport, storage, and finance, and we present the sensitivity of the model to various source- and sink-specific parameters. From our cost model we developed CO2 sequestration supply curves for CO2 sources within 100 miles of nine identified CO2 sinks in the Illinois Basin. The supply curves present the amount of CO2 that can be sequestered under current economic and technical conditions at a given 2 price, and can and should be used by policy makers and commercial organizations to determine the most economical combinations of sources and sinks for CCS on national, regional, and local levels. © 2011 Published by Elsevier Ltd.

Cheng Y.,C12 Energy | Green-Weiskel L.,C12 Energy | Camp R.,Climate Registry | Li X.,C12 Energy | And 2 more authors.
Carbon Management | Year: 2010

With the pressure of energy shortage rising and climate change looming as an imminent disaster, it is up to individual corporate entities to set the pace for climate change action. A good action plan relies heavily on climate knowledge and basis quantification. After the Copenhagen climate summit in 2009, the quantification of greenhouse gases (GHG) emission became the key issue in climate change-mitigation strategy, and was an especially key issue in the negotiations between China and the USA. This report addresses the issue of GHG quantification by demonstrating the potential effectiveness of the Energy and Climate Registry (ECR) that was launched in 2009 in China to help entities input, calculate, analyze, third-party verify and report the energy consumption and GHG emission in China. The ECR is an adaptation of the North American Climate Registry based in Los Angeles, USA. The system will play a pilot role for entities and allow them to measure energy consumption and GHG emissions in an accurate, consistent and verifiable way. This is the first step towards better energy management and the reduction of GHG emissions. © 2010 Future Science Ltd.

C12 Energy | Date: 2010-09-10

A subsurface reservoir may be characterized and/or monitored based on fluid injection. For example, fluid may be injected into the reservoir, and data (e.g., seismic data, geodetic data, pressure data) relating to the injected fluid in the reservoir may be used to identify characteristics of the reservoir and/or to monitor the injected fluid in the reservoir. In some aspects, air or another type of surrogate fluid is injected into the reservoir, and the reservoirs viability as a carbon dioxide sequestration site can be analyzed based on response data collected from the reservoir. In some aspects, carbon dioxide is sequestered in the subsurface reservoir, and three-dimensional geodetic response data is collected and used to monitor and/or facilitate quality control.

Van Nierop E.A.,C12 Energy | Hormoz S.,Harvard University | House K.Z.,C12 Energy | Aziz M.J.,Harvard University
Energy Procedia | Year: 2011

We model a CO2 absorption process to elucidate the rationale for the search for a solvent with an enthalpy of absorption (ΔH) of low magnitude. We explore the relationship between ΔH and the system's performance. While in general a lower magnitude appears to provide better system performance because it permits the stripper temperature to be decreased, as the magnitude drops below its value for monoethanolamine amine (MEA), 80 kJ/mol, the required solvent mass flow rate must increase precipitously and/or the flue gas must be cooled significantly. We argue that the associated parasitic pumping and cooling loads, as well as the increased capital cost, may set a practical lower limit on the magnitude of the enthalpy of absorption that is not very different from that of MEA. © 2011 Published by Elsevier Ltd.

News Article | February 12, 2009

Massachusetts-based carbon capture startup C12 Energy has just entered an exclusive group: cleantech companies backed by venture capital firm Sequoia Capital. The firm, which has been less gung-ho about the green space than many of its Silicon Valley peers, has joined several undisclosed investors in a $4.5 million funding round for C12 Energy, VentureWire reports. The 6-month-old startup is keeping its strategy under wraps for now, but C12 co-founder Kurt Zenz House — the company’s chief scientist and president — has left a paper trail of his ideas for large-scale carbon capture and storage. We can’t say for sure what C12 has in the hopper, of course, but we do know that House has done a lot of research into storing CO2 in carbonate sediments — rocks, essentially. Less than a year before C12 incorporated, House (with three other researchers) published a study in the journal Environmental Science & Technology on electrochemical weathering — a process meant to keep carbon dioxide captured from industrial flues and then stored in oceans from causing acidification. Biophile Magazine reported on House’s study at the time, and offered this explanation: Oceans naturally take up carbon dioxide, but at current emission levels the gas is decreasing the sea’s pH, presenting big problems for marine life and coastal economies. Whoever figures out how to store carbon underwater without raising the acid level (House has experimented with adding an alkalinic solution) could find huge demand from conventional fossil fuel energy producers — especially if pricing schemes for greenhouse gas emissions go into effect. Getting a slice of the billions of dollars set aside for carbon capture in both the House and Senate versions of the stimulus bill could help take House’s scheme out of the lab. Not without risk, however: According to Biophile, a large-scale implementation of the kind of project that House initially envisioned  “would involve building dozens of facilities, akin to large chlorine gas industrial plants, on coasts of volcanic rock.” C12 may have a different vision. If it works, Sequoia’s cleantech batting average could get even better.

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