Clean & Secure Energy from Domestic Oil Shale & Oil Sands Resources
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Liquid fuels from in-situ thermal processing of oil shale & oil sands

In-situ technologies are currently being explored because of their potential for reducing the environmental footprint of oil shale/sands development. However, the first generation technologies have proven to be energy-intensive, and many unknowns remain relative to optimal heating strategies, potential contamination of groundwater, and achievable production rates. The objective of this research is to create models and simulation tools that shall apply to all in-situ thermal processes. Practitioners could then use the tools to optimize their process for energy efficiency, to evaluate various heating strategies, etc. This objective shall be achieved by gathering experimental laboratory data for model validation on multiple scales, by developing the simulation tools necessary to capture the relevant physical processes, and by performing validation and uncertainty quantification for specific laboratory and pilot-scale systems.

Development of CFD-based simulation tool for in-situ thermal processing of oil shale/sands

Reservoir simulation of reactive transport processes

Multiscale thermal processes

Effect of oil shale processing on water compositions

In situ pore physics

Atomistic modeling of oil shale kerogens & oil sands asphaltenes

Geomechanical reservoir state

Developing a predictive geologic model of the Green River oil shale, Uinta Basin

Experimental characterization of oil shales & kerogens