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COAL BED METHANE

Introduction: Coal Gas


Methane is often found in association with coal deposits.
These deposits might be coal seams (coal seam
methane/coal bed methane), be in the process of being
mined or may be abandoned.

It is also possible to gasify coal deposits in situ to provide


synthetic gases for use in power generation.
It is a gas that occurs in association with coal. During the coalification
process, large amount of gas are produced, some of this gas escapes into
other rocks or into the atmosphere but some still remain in coal.

Permeability in coal is created by naturally occuring fractures referred as


cleats.

Coal bed methane is similar to natural gas, differing only in the way that it
is formed and stored in the Earth's crust.

Unlike much natural gas from conventional reservoirs, coal bed methane
contains very little heavier hydrocarbons such as propane or butane, and
no natural gas condensate. It often contains up to a few percent cabon
dioxide.
In the coal layer, there are many fractures (cleats), which
formed during the process.

Water and gas flow in the coal layer through the


fracture(cleat).

The part of the coal which is surrounded by the cleat is


called the matrix (coal matrix), where most of the cbm
attaches to the pores in them.
The main component of the primary coal seam gas is
methane in a concentration of 90-95 % the gas develops
during the geochemical conversion of organic substances to
coal (carbonization).

Coal seam gas is present both as liberated gas in fissures,


faults and as adsorbed gas on the inner surface of the coal
and neighboring rock.
THE SCIENCE OF CBM

Decaying Organic matter is:


Buried
Cooked
Pressurized

Creating
Coal
Methane
Other gases

Ref.www.Coalbed_methane.htm
FORMATION OF CBM
CBM FORMATION

CHEMICAL THERMOGENIC
REACTION METHANE

COAL

BACTERIAL BIOGENIC
ACTION METHANE
PHYSICAL STRUCTURE OF COAL

Coal has a dual porosity structure


Micropores < 2nm
Macropores > 50nm

Macropores are natural fracture that exists perpendicular


bedding plane also called cleats
Face cleats
Butt cleats

Micropores exist between cleats which are also called coal


matrix.
CLEATS IN COAL
CLEATS IN COAL
MOVEMENT OF METHANE IN COAL

Movement of methane in coal occurs at three phase:


phase 1: Desorption of methane from internal surface of coal.

phase 2 : Movement of desorbed methane from coal matrix to


cleats through diffusion following Ficks 2nd law of diffusion.

phase 3 : Transportation of methane from cleats to production


well following Darcys law of fluid through porous media.
MOVEMENT OF METHANE IN COAL

Desorption from Diffusion from Movement within the cleats


coal Surface matrix to cleats
ADSORPTION ISOTHERM
ADSORPTION VS TEMPERATURE
ADSORPTION VS COAL RANK
HOW CBM WELL DIFFERENT FROM NATURAL GAS WELL
Net-Production

Net-Production
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COMPARISON - CBM AND CONVENTIONAL RESERVOIR

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Methane Storage in Coal
Methane in coal is:
Adsorbed on the surfaces of the coal
Stored as free gas in the cleats and
open pores

Ref:-www.wsgs.uwyo.edu/Coal/CBM_Info.aspx
INDIAN CBM RESERVES
India has substantial coal reserves and most are suitable for CBM development.

India holds the fourth largest proven coal reserves in the world, holds significant
prospects for exploration and exploitation of CBM.

The Directorate General of Hydrocarbons(DGH) of India estimates the deposits in


major coal fields (in twelve states of India covering an area of 35,400 km2) contain
approximately 4.6 TCM(trillion cubic meters) of CBM

Now, Indian gas production is around 30% short of gas it requires.

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CBM SHARE ON NATURAL GAS RESERVE IN INDIA

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Source: Energy Statistics_2013
Coal Bed Methane in India
India has huge Gondwana and Tertiary coal deposits distributed in several basins.
The major part of Indian Gondwana coals (mostly up to 300 m depth) is of low
rank.
Tertiary coals of India is better in quality compared to Gondwana coals.
The estimated coal bed methane resource of Gondwana coals appears to be
between 1 and 1.5 Tcm and the Tertiary coals of about4.3 Bcm.
GSI, Reliance Industries Limited have also undertaken investigations on the
prospects of occurrence of coal bed methane in different Gondwana and
Tertiary coalfields of India.
AWARD OF BLOCKS UNDER CBM I-III BIDDING ROUND
The Government of India has awarded 26 CBM blocks in Jharkhand (6),
Madhya Pradesh(5), Andhra Pradesh (2), Chhattisgarh (3),Maharashtra
(1), Rajasthan (4), Gujarat (1) and West Bengal (4) in different
coalfields of India under CBM-I to III.

Exploration activities have established significant finds in eastern and


central India.

Commercial production of CBM has commenced from July 2007.

Source: Indian Minerals Yearbook 2011


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AWARD OF BLOCKS UNDER CBM - IV BIDDING ROUND

The awarded blocks covering an area of 3727 sq.km. are located in the states of Assam (1), Jharkhand
(1), Orissa (2), Madhya Pradesh (1), Madhya Pradesh & Chhattisgarh (1) and Tamil Nadu (1).

The estimated CBM resources of these 7 Blocks is about 330 BCM with expected production potential
of 9 MMSCMD

Source: Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH) 26


India CBM monetization challenges

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India CBM monetization challenges..

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THE CHARACTERISTIC OF COAL BED METHANE

1.Porosity
The porosity of coal bed reservoirs is usually very small, ranging from 0.1
to 10%.
2. Fracture permeability
the fracture permeability acts as the major channel for the gas to flow
3.Thickness of formation and initial reservoir pressure
The thickness of the formation may not be directly proportional to the
volume of gas produced in some areas
4. Other properties
coal density, initial gas phase concentration, critical gas saturation
Types of Coal Gas:

Gases derived from coal come in four key forms:


Coal Seam Methane (CSM), or Coal Bed Methane (CBM)
Coal Mine Methane (CMM), or Working Mine Methane
(WMM)
Abandoned Mine Methane (AMM)
Syngas from Underground Coal Gasification (UCG)
COAL MINE METHANE (CMM):
Coal mine methane (CMM) is a type of gas present in active, working mine sites.
This gas is extracted from the air in the coal mine helping improve safety and
preventing uncontrolled release of methane to atmosphere.

CMM is a mixture of methane & air released during the process of coal mining and
must be vented for safety reasons.

Methane has significant effects as a greenhouse gas being 21 times higher than
that of carbon dioxide, therefore its capture and use in gas engines has significant
environmental benefits.

CMM typically has an oxygen content of 5-12%. The methane content ranges from
25-60%. However, the methane/air proportion can change suddenly, thus
complicating its use in gas engines.
ABANDONED MINE METHANE (AMM):

Even after coal mines are shut down, coal mine gas continues to be
released.

Coal mine gas from abandoned mines typically contains no oxygen,


and its composition changes slowly.

The methane content ranges from 60-80%.


EXPLORATION METHOD OF CBM
3D seismic prospecting technology has been widely used in coalmine area
as a structure prospecting method.

The main seismic prospecting methods for coal bed methane :-


Predicting coal bed methane based on bury depth.
Predicting coal bed methane based on impedance inversion.
Predicting coal bed methane based on frequency spectrum decomposition.
Predicting coal bed methane based on seismic attributes.
PARAMETERS IN CBM EXPLORATION
Regional geology of the area
Mapping and surveying
Areal extent of coal seams
Thickness of the coal seams
Permeability in the Coal as measured by tests, logs, etc.
Gas content data

INITIAL STAGES OF CBM EXPLORATION


Stacking of location

Planning strategy for CBM


- geo technical order.
- preparation of master log.
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SOURCE: ESSAR ENERGY
How the estimation is done?
There are two popular methods of estimating recoverable methane gas from a
coal seam:-
One method requires estimating methane reserves by boring to the top of the
coal seam, then extracting a core from the coal.
The amount of methane recovered from the coal core is used to estimate gas
content per unit volume of coal. If a number of cores are drilled and methane
gas release is observed, one can estimate the amount of gas available in a
region.
The limitations to this method are:
1) there is much disturbance to the coal seam core before gas release is
measured.
2) it is expensive.
3) not every region of potential CBM development has been drilled and explored.
Another method is through a series of calculations based on information
known about the coal in the region and the feasibility of CBM
development.
A coal seam has favorable reserves if it produces 50-70 ft3 per ton of
coal.
CBM extraction is economical at 50 ft3 per ton of coal when a coal seam
is 20 feet thick or more.
Coal bed methane exists only in areas where the dominant chemistry of
the water in the coal seam is sodium bicarbonate and where the coal
seam is buried deeply enough to maintain sufficient water pressure to
hold the gas in place.
CBM DRILLING

BORE HOLE CONVENTIONAL VERTICAL


VERTICAL DRILLING DRILLING
BORE HOLE DRILLING

Low Clay Polymer Mud system


Surface casing only
Continuous coring of formation
Plotting of litho columns.
Correlation of litho columns on the basis
of borehole data.
Sub-surface information are revealed
and interpretations are done.

Ref:- Raniganj bore hole drilling (photograph)


CONVENTIONAL VERTICAL DRILLING
Mud circulation for the
-stability of bore hole and
-removal of cuttings.
Mud used:-
- bentonite suspension and
-PHPA (Partially hydrolyzed polyacrylic
amide)
Casing
2 Casing Policy (12 - 9, 8 - 5 )

Cementation - Two stage cementation or light


weight cementation- due to large
column of cement & low fracture gradient of
Coals.
Casing perforations

Ref:-www.coal bed gas drilling information.htm


CBM PRODUCTION TECHNIQUE
FLOW SHEET:
CBM PRODUCTION

Methane will stay in a coalbed as long as the water table remains


above the gas saturated coal.

Gas is released from the coalbed when cleat pressure is reduced by


dewatering.

Some wells may never become economic if coals cant be dewatered


Intrinsic Properties Affecting Gas Production
Gas contained in coal bed methane is mainly methane and trace
quantities of ethane, nitrogen, carbon dioxide and few other
gases.
Porosity.
Adsorption Capacity.
Fracture Permeability.
Thickness of formation and initial reservoir pressure.
CBM PRODUCTION PHASES
Coal bed methane production passes through three phases during the
life time of the reservoir-

Dewatering phase

Stable production phase

Declining phase
The Three stages of CBM Production

Stage 1, Stage 2, Stage 3,


De- Mid Life/ Decline
watering Stable production
Productio
MCFD or BPD

Water Gas

Time
DEWATERING PHASE
During the phase CBM wells experiment a constant water production with a
very low or negligible gas production.

Initially most cbm wells are naturally water saturated because water
liberation occurs during the coalification process

The water is occupying the principle cleat network and there is the need of
removing the water from the major fractures system in order to produce gas.

The number of days of this dewatering process and the amount of produced
water can vary widely

They are very difficult to estimate and their influence in the economics is
very hard to predict.
STABLE PRODUCTION PHASE
Phase 2 is described by a dramatically decrease in the water production
and increase in the gas production rate.

The water relative permeability decrease the gas relative permeability


increase

The gas production has stabilized and starts to experiment a typical


decline trend.
DECLINING PHASE
Drilling phase 3, the well is considered to be dewatered . So the water
production is in the low level or negligible.

The water and gas relative permeability do not change extensively.

The steady state exist for the rest of producing life.

The limit between phase 2 and 3 is determined by peak gas is reached.


ECBM (ENHANCED COAL BED METHANE RECOVERY)
ECBM (Enhanced Coal Bed Methane Recovery) is a technique to improve
CBM which is produced.

In this technique, gas injection is commonly used is N2, and CO2. Here,
the results obtained are very different depending on which gas injection is
used.
Using CO2 for pressure maintenance can also reduce CO2
emissions (sequestration).

Methane CO2
Production Injection
Extraction
A steel-encased hole is drilled into the coal seam (100 1500 meters
below ground).
Gas and produced water.
Then the gas is sent to a compressor station and into natural gas
pipelines.
Coal bed methane wells often produce at lower gas rates than
conventional reservoirs, typically peaking at near 300,000 cubic feet
(8,500 m3) per day (about 0.100 m/s).
How do gas companies extract methane from a coal
seam?
Since CBM travels with ground water in coal seams, extraction of CBM
involves pumping available water from the seam in order to reduce the water
pressure that holds gas in the seam.
CBM has very low solubility in water and readily separates as pressure
decreases, allowing it to be piped out of the well separately from the water.
Water moving from the coal seam to the well bore encourages gas migration
toward the well.
CBM producers try not to dewater the coal seam, but rather seek to decrease
the water pressure (or head of water) in the coal seam to just above the top
of the seam. However, sometimes the water level drops into the coal seam.
Pressure drawdown profile of a single well

Water
Flow Only
Discontinuous
Gas Flow
Continuous
Gas Flow

For CBM reservoirs, we need to deplete the


reservoir pressure down low to get the gas
out.
SALT WATER INTRUSION:
Environmental Impacts
Water withdrawal may depress aquifers over a large area and
affect groundwater flows
The release of CBM into the atmosphere adversely affects the
global climate.
Operators are required to obtain building permits for roads,
pipelines and structures, obtain wastewater (produced water)
discharge permits, and prepare Environmental Impact
Statements.