Fossil Fuels - Energy, Society, and the Environment Unit...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–17. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Energy, Society, and the Environment Unit II: Fossil Fuels
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
What are Fossil Fuels? Petroleum = liquid crude oil, natural gas liquids, propane, butane, gasoline, kerosene, heating oil, diesel fuel Formed from plants and animals decomposed at bottom of oceans millions of years ago High temperature and pressure loss of oxygen (only C and H left) (thus, they are also called hydrocarbons)
Background image of page 2
Fossil Fuels Energy flow: Solar energy --> photosynthesis --> carbohydrates in plants --> decomposition into petroleum Variety of C and H combos can be created in this way: some solid, some liquid, some gas Liquid and gas hydrocarbons can travel through porous rock but get trapped in certain types of geological formations
Background image of page 3

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
A Typical Geological Formation for Fossil Fuels
Background image of page 4
Types of Fossil Fuels Natural Gas Petroleum Natural Gas Liquids Shale Oil Tar Sands GAS SOLID
Background image of page 5

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Chemical Compositions methane ethane (make up natural gas)
Background image of page 6
Chemical Compositions Octane Molecule (a primary component of gasoline)
Background image of page 7

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Types of Fossil Fuels Natural Gas Petroleum Natural Gas Liquids Shale Oil Tar Sands GAS SOLID
Background image of page 8
Shale Oil Shale Oil: formed at lake bottoms (most notably at the bottom of Green River Formation about 50 Million yrs ago Primarily a solid hydrocarbon (kerogen)
Background image of page 9

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Shale Oil Green River Formation contains 600-2000 billion barrels of oil After many years, still not economically recoverable A thick overburden contributes to cost Evaporating solid kerogen and condensing the vapors to oil contributes to cost We will compare this resource to amount of petroleum left in the U.S. (shale oil resource is much larger)
Background image of page 10
Tar Sands Alberta Tar Sands: Athabasca Deposit Canada has about as much recoverable oil in its tar sands as Saudi Arabia has conventional oil (about 300 billion bbl)
Background image of page 11

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Tar Sands Tar sands refers to thick oil called bitumen that is mixed with sand, clay, and water Intensive energy is required to process the sands into crude oil Canada has made progress in the processing technology (steam injection, etc) : still costs about $20/barrel to process
Background image of page 12
Tar Sands Extremely harmful to the environment surface mining energy intensive processing consumes large amount of water and also natural gas contains large amounts of other pollutants
Background image of page 13

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Types of Fossil Fuels Coal: Different formation than petroleum and natural gas Much higher Carbon content (in its purest form) Formed 350--150 million years ago from plant life in swamps Different decomposition, aerobic/anaerobic processes It is a solid, mostly made of carbon Types: Anthracite (purest), bituminous coal, lignite, peat (in order of decreasing carbon content and cleanliness)
Background image of page 14
US Coal Reserves From the US Department of Energy
Background image of page 15

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
US Coal Reserves Generally accepted to be about 250 years worth at the current consumption rate (250 billion tonnes) Reserves relatively easy to determine because they are near the surface A significant fraction bituminous and sub-bituminous
Background image of page 16
Image of page 17
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 09/04/2009 for the course PHYS 202 taught by Professor Ozel during the Spring '09 term at University of Arizona- Tucson.

Page1 / 53

Fossil Fuels - Energy, Society, and the Environment Unit...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 17. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online