KGS researchers funded by the University of Kentucky Energy Research Prioritization Partnership grant program
Kentucky Geological Survey researchers Rick Bowersox and John Hickman recently received funding from the University of Kentucky Energy Research Prioritization Partnership program for their project, "Assessing the Potential for Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES) in Kentucky to Augment Energy Production by Renewable Resources." Greenhouse gas emissions can be mitigated by the co-installation of CAES with electric generation powered by fossil fuels or renewable energy sources.
CAES storage has historically been used in solution-mined salt caverns but, according to lead investigator Bowersox, storage in “subsurface depleted oil and gas fields and in abandoned limestone mines” may be a way to reuse depleted geologic reservoirs. For this project, the researchers will collect laboratory and field measurements to evaluate the geological, mineralogical, geochemical, geomechanical, and geophysical properties of the targeted geologic strata and determine their suitability for CAES.
Bowersox and Hickman plan to publish their findings and look for collaborative research projects and commercial applications for this work. The results of this project could benefit Kentuckians because our state has some of the highest greenhouse gas emissions in the United States.