Reducing the Impact of Hydrocarbon Energy

Although the long-term solution to energy needs must be based on renewable sources, the present global need for oil and gas shows no sign of a reduction in energy consumption. In fact, natural gas is clearly a “bridge fuel” from high-carbon sources of energy like coal and oil to a renewable energy future. Extraction comes at a price in terms of production efficiency and cost, as well as possible environmental hazards. The introduction of horizontal drilling coupled with hydraulic fracturing or ‘fracking’ has increased the effective access to this energy resource, but water usage and wastewater remains an important issue. ESRI’s projects are aimed at overcoming current issues, including enhanced oil recovery (EOR), and developing entirely new low impact approaches. 

Research Projects

  • Enabling CO2 sequestration using Proppants Optimised for Pure Propane Stimulation (ECO PrOPPS) - Develop a ‘activated’ on-demand proppant to seal up a shale gas well at the end of life to sequester CO2.
  • Glass-based proppant optimised for Pure Propane Stimulation (Glass ProPPs)- Development of a cost-effective customised glass-based proppant that is compatible with non-water gas production.
  • Flexible Integrated Energy Systems (FLEXIS)- Develop an energy systems research capability in Wales which will build on the world class capability that already exists in Welsh universities.
  • Flowback of proppant materials - Uncovering the physical mechanisms that lead to failure of proppant packing.
  • Homogeniation and Up-scaling Modeling Technology  for Oil and Gas Applications – Practical homogenization and up-scaling technology to cope with commercial projects in oil & gas development and production.
  • King Saud University-Swansea University Collaborative (K(SU)2) - Collaborative research for energy solutions
  • Immobilisation of proppant - New technology for immobilization of proppants for water flood applications.
  • Computer modelling of rock formations during reservoir development (COMPRock) - Develop high-fidelity computational models to capture the geotechnical response of rock formations during reservoir development.
  • Computer modelling of multiphase Flow during reservoir development (COMPFlow) - Develop high-fidelity computational models to capture the multiphase flow effects during reservoir development.
  • Membranes for produced water treatment  - New technology for non-fouling membranes to allow for low energy treatment of frack flowback and produced waters.

Research Funding

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