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High pressure water pyrolysis of coal to evaluate the role of pressure on hydrocarbon generation and source rock maturation at high maturities under geological conditions

Uguna, Clement N.; Carr, Andrew D.; Snape, Colin E.; Meredith, Will. 2015 High pressure water pyrolysis of coal to evaluate the role of pressure on hydrocarbon generation and source rock maturation at high maturities under geological conditions. Organic Geochemistry, 78. 44-51. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.orggeochem.2014.10.013

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Abstract/Summary

This study investigates the effect of water pressure on hydrocarbon generation and source rock maturation at high maturities for a perhydrous Tertiary Arctic coal, Svalbard. Using a 25 ml Hastalloy vessel, the coal was pyrolysed under low water pressure (230–300 bar) and high water pressure (500, 700 and 900 bar) conditions between 380 °C and 420 °C for 24 h. At 380 °C and 420 °C, gas yields were not affected by pressure up to 700 bar, but were reduced slightly at 900 bar. At 380 °C, the expelled oil yield was highest at 230 bar, but reduced significantly at 900 bar. At 420 °C cracking of expelled oil to gas was retarded at 700 and 900 bar. As well as direct cracking of the coal, the main source of gas generation at high pressure at both 380 °C and 420 °C is from bitumen trapped in the coal, indicating that this is a key mechanism in high pressure geological basins. Vitrinite reflectance (VR) was reduced by 0.16 %Ro at 380 °C and by 0.27 %Ro at 420 °C at 900 bar compared to the low pressure runs, indicating that source rock maturation will be more retarded at higher maturities in high pressure geological basins.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): https://doi.org/10.1016/j.orggeochem.2014.10.013
ISSN: 01466380
Date made live: 08 Dec 2014 10:28 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/509011

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