This project is a joint effort by the Kansas Geological Survey (KGS) and American Energies Corporation (a company that primarily operates stripper wells in Kansas) and is funded by the Stripper Well Consortium.
Principal Investigator: Saibal Bhattacharya
Co-PIs: Dr. W. Lynn Watney and Dr. K. David Newell
In the US, about 32 tcf (17% of known reserves) is categorized as low-BTU "sub quality" because of greater than 5% N2.
33% of 1253 gas analyses in Kansas are found to be low-BTU (2% CO2, or > 4% N2 or inert gases)
Much of this sub-pipeline quality gas comes from small and marginal fields often in remote locations and remains unproduced in plugged wells or shut in behind pipe because available gas enrichment technologies become economically viable at high feed volumes (> 0.5 mmscf/d)
Design, build, optimize a 2-Tower Micro-Scale N2 rejection plant that is economic for low feed volumes (40 to 200 mcf/d) using off-shelf non proprietary components.
- Adsorbent--readily available activated carbon
- Plant design has less than 10 moving parts--easy to build and maintain
- Employ modular design--add/remove skid-mounted units to handle fluctuating feed volumes
- Minimum environment impact
- Operates free of electric grid--applicable in remote locations
- Compressor runs on feed gas
- Unit powered by batteries charged by the compressor engine
- Power flare in vent gas line with solar panels
- Vent gas is free of VOCs, heavy HC, H2S, CO2, and H2O
- Small plant footprint: approx. 400 sq ft
Optimize plant to maximize CH4 recovery using shortest cycle times by selectively varying input parameters such as inflow rates, cycle time, and adsorbent quality and measuring effects on CH4 recovery and breakthrough, bed economics (degradation, compaction, & heaving) and operation costs
Demonstrate that stripper gas well operators can easily build micro N2-rejection plants for about $100,000, operate it at attractive rates of return (of at least 40%), and significantly add (approx. 1 tcf) to the nation's reserves.