Clean fosil fuels

Cost-benefit analysis of methane abatement technologies for Qatar gas supply chain

Student: Jemimah Julie Anil

Supervisor: Dr Paul Balcombe, Department of Chemical Engineering

Methane emissions from the natural gas supply chain are a concerning issue particularly due to the growing shift from coal to gas. This thesis aims to evaluate the economic benefits of using methane abatement technologies for Qatargas, a leading LNG exporter. To do this, methane emissions from the gas supply chain are quantified. Then a cost-benefit analysis is conducted and the sensitivity of the economic value of the technologies to the fluctuations in gas prices and emissions rate are evaluated.

The role of carbon capture and storage technology under different carbon cost scenarios considering endogenous technology learning

Student: Niccolo Bitossi

Supervisors: Dr Adam Hawkes, Department of Chemical Engineering, Dr Julia Sachs, Department of Chemical Engineering, Dr Sara Budinis, Department of Chemical Engineering

This project is intended to explore decarbonisation pathways of the US industrial sector where Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technology is employed. The focus is on the technology learning process and how this affects the capital and operational cost of CCS. The effect that different learning curves and carbon price scenarios have on financial investments and CO2 emission reduction is evaluated. The analysis is carried out through the Energy System Model MUSE.

Life cycle analysis of greenhouse gas emissions from natural gas transmission via onshore pipeline from Russia to central Europe

Student: Kwun Ming (Anthony) Chan

Supervisors: Professor Anna Korre, Energy Futures Lab, Dr Zhenggang Nie, Department of Earth Science & Engineering

Many countries have displaced coal with natural gas for electricity generation to achieve greenhouse gas mitigation targets. Some studies pointed out that the methane emission in production and transmission stages might negate the positive effects of greenhouse gas emission saving from displacing coal. This thesis models and analyses the life cycle of an onshore natural gas transmission pipeline that transports natural gas from Russia to central Europe. The greenhouse gas emission will be evaluated according to ISO standards. After baseline scenario is established, alternative options for operation and maintenance will be explored to reduce the greenhouse gas emission in natural gas transmission pipeline.

Assessing feasibility, desirability and viability of greenhouse gas removal technologies in the UK

Student: Yorukcan Erbay

Supervisors: Dr Mark Workman, Energy Research Partnership, Mr David Addison, Virgin Earth Challenge

87% of IPCC’s Integrated Assessment Models scenarios limiting global warming to 2°C involve negative emissions. This indicates a reliance on greenhouse gas removal (GGR) technology deployment at unprecedented scales to achieve climate targets. A recent study showed a vast potential for many GGR technologies to capture value under different UK development scenarios. My research will build on this previous work and determine how probable it is to achieve value capture with GGR business models. The research will assess (1) feasibility of GGR through technology stress testing, (2) desirability of GGR through studying customer perception and (3) viability of GGR business models by identifying enabling policy actions.

How can the major oil and gas companies contribute in the transition to a low-carbon energy system?

Student: Francis Shaw

Supervisors: Dr Jeffrey Hardy, Grantham Institute, Dr Christoph Mazur, Department of Chemical Engineering

This project explores the potential of the major international oil & gas companies to transform and deploy their capabilities in support of the transition to a low carbon energy system. Building upon current theories of socio-technical transitions this work investigates the full range of pro-active strategic response options available to the oil & gas majors as the energy system transition progresses. The project utilises social science mixed methods based on critical-realism philosophy, combining objective data with a range of differing subjective perspectives and judgements. Quantitative and qualitative data are gathered from published reports and company updates, supplemented by semi-structured interviews with key players from industry. A back-casting approach is also utilised by taking the International Energy Agency’s Tracking Clean Energy Progress framework and mapping the capabilities of the majors against those requirements. Hence a deeper understanding is generated of the enablers required to harness the relevant capabilities of the majors in support of the energy transition, which could ultimately make a successful energy transition more attainable.

Role of decarbonising technologies in the cement industry under different carbon price scenarios

Student: Kaiming Zhao

Supervisors: Dr Adam Hawkes, Department of Chemical Engineering, Dr Julia Sachs, Department of Chemical Engineering, Dr Sara Budinis, Department of Chemical Engineering

The cement production sector alone accounts for 5% of global anthropogenic emissions of carbon dioxide. In response to the need to decarbonise the sector, many technologies have emerged since the start of the century, ranging from thermal and energy efficiency improvement, alternative raw materials, waste heat recovery to Carbon Capture, Storage and Utilisation options in the recent years. This project aims to gather techno-economic data including emission reduction, energy consumption and capital cost of different decarbonising technologies, and input them into the industry sector in the MUSE energy systems model developed by the Sustainable Gas Institute of Imperial College London. The simulation is then used to assess and analyse the role of these technologies in the future under different carbon cost scenarios.