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In Situ Gasification

In-situ coal gasification is the chemical conversion of deeply-buried coal into gases including methane, hydrogen, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide


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What is In Situ Gasification?

In-situ means “in place” and refers to recovery techniques at the location of the energy source. In-situ coal gasification is also known as Underground Coal Gasification (UCG)1. It is the chemical conversion of deeply-buried coal in its original coal seam into a mixture of hydrogen, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide and methane by creating the right process conditions in the coal seam to cause a series of chemical reactions to occur2.

The mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide is known as Syngas or Synthetic gas that can be used as fuel or feedstock for further chemical processes such as ammonia production or liquid fuels. The carbon dioxide generated during the process can be captured to be piped back into the seam or pumped into oil wells to boost recovery rates.

The process works by injecting an oxidant (usually air, oxygen, or steam) into a coal seam. The oxidant reacts with the coal and water present in the seam to produce syngas that is extracted through a production well.

Coal resources that are deeper than 60 meters and not suitable for conventional mining are ideally suited for UCG3.