Centrum czystych technologii węglowych


TOPS - Technology options for Coupled Underground Coal Gasification and CO2 Capture and Storage

Project TOPS has been applied for the Call of Proposals in the Area: ENERGY.2013.6.1.1 „Combined Underground Coal Gasification and CO2 Capture and Storage” within the 7th Framework Programme of the EC.

The project is an unprecedented approach to the analysis of a potential location for Underground Coal Gasification (UCG)with analysis of the possibilty to decrease CO2 emission from the process by feeding it to the post-reaction cavern.At the same time the project includes elaboration of high value options for utilisation of the produced gas as the raw material for chemical syntheses.

The main objective of the project is to develop a generic UCG-CCS site characterisation workflow, and the accompanying technologies, which would address the dilemma faced by the proponents of reactor zone CO2 storage, and offer technological solutions to source sink mismatch issues that are likely to be faced in many coalfields. This objective will be achieved through integrated research into the field based technology knowledge gaps, such as cavity progression and geomechanics, potential groundwater contamination and subsidence impacts, together with research into process engineering solutions in order to assess the role/impact of site specific factors (coal type, depth/pressure, thickness, roof and floor rock strata, hydrology) and selected reagents on the operability of a given CO2 emission mitigation option in a coalfield. CO2 storage capacity on site for European and international UCG resources will be assessed and CO2  mitigation technologies based on end use of produced synthetic gas will be evaluated.

The technology options  identified will be evaluated with respect to local and full chain Life Cycle environmental impacts and costs. The project takes a radical and holistic approach to coupled UCG-CCS, and thus the site selection criteria for the coupled process, considering different end-uses of the produced synthetic gas, covering other options beyond power generation, and will evaluate novel approaches to UCG reagent use in order to optimise the whole process. This approach aims at minimising the need for on-site CO2 storage capacity as well as maximising the economic yield of UCG through value added end products, as well as power generation, depending on the local coalfield and geological conditions.

Project is realised in an international interdisciplinary consortium coordinated by Imperial College in London and comprises of 16 institutions from all ober the world including USA, South Africa and China. The consortium consist of both research and industrial partners.

TOPS is realised in Główny Instytut Górnictwa under the lead of Professor Krzysztof Stańczyk, the Head of the Department of Energy Saving and Air Protection and teh coordinator of CCTW. He will undertake the role of the late Professor Jan Rogut, PhD eng., one of the “founding fathers” of the Project in leading the team in the realization of the tasks within WP 1, 2, 4, 6 and 7.