PESA NSW June Technical Meeting 2021
Tuesday, 29 June @ 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm (Australia/Sydney time)$15 – $75
Microbial enhancement of Coal Seam Gas reservoirs – A multi-disciplinary approach to enhance biogenic gas production
In the subsurface, coal seams represent something of an oasis for microbial life. The environment is anoxic, warm, often wet and contains an abundant, but intractable source of carbon held in the organic matter of the coal. In eastern Australian coal seams, microbial community complexity depends on temperature with hotter, deeper coals typically hosting less diverse communities. Regardless, coal seam biodiversity ranges from approximately 50 to 400 species. In this environment these microbes work to degrade organic matter in the coal, very slowly converting it through a variety of increasingly simple forms to methane. This process is typically very slow, as the environment is lacking in key microbial macronutrients. This had led to the realisation that it is possible to enhance the rates of microbial methane generation by overcoming these nutrient deficiencies. CSIRO has been undertaking work to demonstrate the potential of microbial-enhanced coal seam methane through additions of nutrients and holds several patents around additions and processes to enhance microbial methane generation. This talk will explore some of our history, experiments, results and discoveries along with the implications for industry.
Image: Microbes attached to coal surface.