USGS and Colorado School of Mines Partner to Explore Potential of Geologic Hydrogen

The joint industry program will explore the potential of geologic hydrogen as a low-carbon energy source.

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Colorado School of Mines and the US Geological Survey (USGS) announced they will partner to establish a joint industry program to explore the potential of geologic hydrogen as a low-carbon energy source. Eight companies including BP, Chevron, and Petrobras, have signed on as industry partners to help fund the program. The consortium collaborative research in September 2023.

The consortium’s research will focus on the development of four key areas:

  • A geologic “hydrogen system” model that identifies sources, migration pathways and mechanisms, reservoirs, traps, and seals leading to accumulations of hydrogen in the subsurface.
  • Surface exploration approaches, including remote sensing and surface geochemistry, to refine our understanding of where hydrogen accumulations exist in the subsurface.
  • Subsurface exploration tools, including multiple geophysical tools, advanced signal processing and artificial intelligence tools, to image geologic hydrogen systems and potential economic accumulations suitable for energy production.
  • 3D reactive transport modeling that integrates geology, geochemistry, and geophysics to improve the understanding of hydrogen systems and provide guidance to the development of exploration strategies.

“A major focus of the consortium is developing immediately deployable technologies,” said Yaoguo Li, professor of geophysics at Mines. According to the university, the immediate objectives are the scientific understanding of hydrogen systems, including mechanisms and conditions of hydrogen generation, migration, and preservation, as well as practical tools to find hydrogen accumulation and identify the potential for enhanced hydrogen generation.

More information about the collaboration is available here.