GTI is enabling environmentally sound and cost effective management, by-product recovery, and beneficial use or reuse of produced water streams to ease public concerns about hydraulic fracturing.
GTI has led Water Conservation and Management Committees in the Barnett and Appalachian Shales, performed work for the New Albany Shale and Marcellus Shale Research Consortia, and assessed water management and reuse technologies for RPSEA. Researchers are utilizing water-based life cycle modeling to provide timely planning and technology guidance for sustainable shale gas water and solid waste management.
In 2011, we completed a techno-economic assessment of water management solutions, a joint industry project with 22 companies. The study defined current water management practices, emerging solutions, and benchmark costs; categorized best-in-class options; and identified technology gaps and opportunities for cost reductions and efficiency improvements.
GTI is also providing objective, third party evaluations of client technologies from methods to fracture stimulate unconventional resources more efficiently to systems for treating flowback and produced water more economically.
A portable and autonomous water laboratory platform under development with Spyglass Biosecurity Inc. will monitor for the presence of corrosion-causing microorganisms within oil and gas production sites. This effort will employ molecular analytical methods such as Quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction (qPCR) to generate water quality data in near real time and provide information that can be used to mitigate operational costs associated with biocorrosion, gas souring and water treatment.
GTI serves as a major technical performer in the Research Partnership to Secure Energy for America (RPSEA) program, focused on developing gas shales in an environmentally acceptable manner, including the development and deployment of technology to mitigate the impact to land, air, and water resources.
In 2011, GTI signed a $4.5 million contract with RPSEA for characterization of the Marcellus Shale and development of advanced well completion technologies and best practices that address technical and environmental challenges for this resource. The project is focusing on identifying the optimum techniques for enhanced fracture stimulation and reliable reservoir assessment.
GTI has formed a collaborative partnership with a major service company to develop and commercialize down-hole laser energy applications in oil and gas, which will offer significant economic and environmental benefits. The first application was successfully demonstrated under controlled laboratory conditions in the GTI laser R&D facility, and field prototype design and construction is underway. A down-hole laser perforation tool and capability for real-time progress monitoring of laser generated perforations in rock are being developed.
A new 10kW fiber laser was installed at GTI in late 2012, providing 3X the power of the previous system. A major control system upgrade was also completed to provide a modular, flexible system that can integrate advanced process feedback algorithms and process monitoring.
GTI’s 3rd annual Global Unconventional Gas Summit was held in Beijing, China in November 2012. Co-hosted by GTI and the China Energy Research Society, the event was a success and provided an elite meeting place for more than 220 senior-level International and Chinese energy experts, alongside 50 first-class speakers from the global gas industry and governmental bodies.
A series of high-level signing ceremonies and networking events took place alongside the event. These included SPT Energy Group and GTI’s signing of a framework cooperation agreement for a training and learning center and the signing of an agreement of understanding between the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, the Department of Energy, the Department of Commerce and the Chinese National Energy Agency.
GTI is partnering with PoroGen Corporation to develop a versatile technology, targeted for floating LNG production, to purify natural gas with much smaller size and lower cost than conventional options. This Joint Industry Program (JIP)—partnering with major international companies—is creating design engineering documentation for a field demonstration site.
Much of the domestic natural gas produced requires the removal of contaminants before the gas can be transported, and this midstream cleanup is a significant contributor to the total cost of production. GTI has technology platforms and expertise in natural gas cleanup systems.
Morphysorb® acid gas removal physical solvent has several unique and desirable properties for treating high concentrations of acid gas. This technology is licensed to Uhde, a partner with GTI in its development, and has been commercially deployed for natural gas processing.
GTI has also developed a multi-component clean-up process for sulfur removal and recovery from natural gas. It has the potential to significantly reduce the complexity and costs of the current clean-up train. The process has been independently estimated to substantially reduce the cost of sulfur recovery by replacing traditional Claus and tail-gas treating units. Testing is under way of a co-current reactor design to further reduce capital costs.
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Unlocking the Potential of Unconventional GasSpecial To Pipeline & Gas Journal March 2013
Techno-economic Assessment of Shale Gas Water Management Solutions