Energy Resources Recovery
This department evaluates and pursues new opportunities in energy recovery methods, and monitors the potential environmental impacts of those methods. It addresses the challenges of a limited supply of secure, affordable fossil energy sources and the potential effects of extracting those resources.
It maintains nationally recognized capabilities in a variety of extraction techniques for conventional oil and gas resources, and is applying its knowledge to develop unconventional resources, such as shale oil and coal-bed methane. Lab researchers are active in developing new methods and technologies for improving oil and gas recovery, and studying how recovery techniques could impact water, land and air.
The department is researching critical aspects of carbon sequestration, including developing reliable data on the carrying capacity of certain geologic formations to hold carbon.