Depleted oil and gas wells can be used to store hydrogen

Depleted oil and gas wells can be used to store hydrogen

What are the closed galleries of the mine? coal Or a depleted oil or gas well? In principle, for many things: from geothermal energy production to storing waste such as carbon dioxide from capture systems or resources such as hydrogen. Specifically, they want to reserve depleted oil and gas wells in the United States for the latter.



For now, simulations

Those responsible for the project work in Sandia National Laboratories They are running simulations and experiments with the aim of discovering whether, and how they hypothesize, it is indeed possible to use oil and gas wells to store hydrogen at a reasonable cost. “Hydrogen “It will be useful for seasonal and long-term storage,” says Tuan Hu, a chemical engineer at Sandia, who is leading the research. If it eventually proves useful for this purpose, it will partially solve one of the system's main problems related to solar or wind power. : Impossibility of storing energy: “If you think about solar energy, in the summer you can produce a lot of electricity, but you don't need much for heating. The excess can be converted into hydrogen and stored until the winter.”

Currently, it can be stored in salt caves

Hydrogen can be stored underground in salt caverns, but salt deposits are not as abundant as oil or gas wells or coal mines. “With hydrogen and these spaces there is a problem: the gas can be stored in rocks, leak or become contaminated. “What we want is for the hydrogen to stay where we inject it and not be lost, because we will lose money and resources.” To overcome this potential problem, they analyzed the structure and properties of the rocks surrounding the oil deposits. They identified a specific type of clay common in the oil shale around these deposits that would reduce losses to a minimum. These results about the clay were published last year in the journal Sustainable energy and fuels .

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