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  • Natural or native molecular hydrogen (H2) can be a major component in natural gas, and yet its role in the global energy sector’s usage as a clean energy carrier is not normally considered. Here, we update the scarce reporting of hydrogen in Australian natural gas with new compositional and isotopic analyses of H2 undertaken at Geoscience Australia. The dataset involves ~1000 natural gas samples from 470 wells in both sedimentary and non-sedimentary basins with reservoir rock age ranging from the Neoarchean to Cenozoic. Pathways to H2 formation can involve either organic matter intermediates and its association with biogenic natural gas or chemical synthesis and its presence in abiogenic natural gas. The latter reaction pathway generally leads to H2-rich (>10 mol% H2) gas in non-sedimentary rocks. Abiogenic H2 petroleum systems are described within concepts of source-migration-reservoir-seal but exploration approaches are different to biogenic natural gas. Rates of abiogenic H2 generation are governed by the availability of specific rock types and different mineral catalysts, and through chemical reactions and radiolysis of accessible water. Hydrogen can be differently trapped compared to hydrocarbon gases; for example, pore space can be created in fractured basement during abiogenic reactions, and clay minerals and evaporites can act as effective adsorbents, traps and seals. Underground storage of H2 within evaporites (specifically halite) and in depleted petroleum reservoirs will also have a role to play in the commercial exploitation of H2. Estimated H2 production rates from water radiolysis in mafic-ultramafic and granitic rocks and serpentinisation of ultramafic-mafic rocks gives a H2 inferred resource potential between ~1.6 to ~58 MMm3 y-1 for onshore Australia down to a depth of 1 km. The prediction and subsequent identification of subsurface H2 that can be exploited remains enigmatic and awaits robust exploration guidelines and targeted drilling for proof of concept. Appeared in The APPEA Journal 61(1) 163-191, 2 July 2021

  • This web service depicts potential geological sequestration sites and has been compiled as part of the Australian Petroleum Cooperative Research Centre's GEODISC program (1999-2002).

  • This web service depicts the locations of onshore depleted gas fields, underground gas storage facilities and known, thick underground halite deposits, all with the potential for large scale hydrogen storage.

  • There is significant momentum in Australia to develop a hydrogen production industry. The Australian economy is highly reliant on fossil fuel exports and hydrogen is seen as a pathway to decarbonise Australia’s economy and as a source of ongoing export revenue in future years. Although not readily available in its natural form, hydrogen can be produced as a gas and used for a variety of everyday tasks and industrial uses: heating and cooking, transportation, alternative feedstock in industry, and energy storage. This talk provides a 101 on hydrogen and maps out a vision of hydrogen production in Australia.

  • The potential for hydrogen production in the Galilee Basin region is assessed to provide a joint information base for hydrogen generation potential from renewable energy, groundwater and natural gas coupled with carbon capture and storage (CCS). This web service summarises hydrogen potential in the Galilee Basin region.

  • The potential for hydrogen production in the Galilee Basin region is assessed to provide a joint information base for hydrogen generation potential from renewable energy, groundwater and natural gas coupled with carbon capture and storage (CCS). This web service summarises hydrogen potential in the Galilee Basin region.

  • All commercially produced hydrogen worldwide is presently stored in salt caverns. The only known thick salt accumulations in eastern Australia are found in the Boree Salt of the Adavale Basin in central Queensland. The Boree Salt consists predominantly of halite and is considered to be suitable for hydrogen storage. In 2021, Geoscience Australia contracted Intrepid Geophysics to perform 3D geological modelling of the Adavale Basin, particularly interested in modelling the Boree Salt deposit in the region. The developed 3D model has identified three main salt bodies of substantial thicknesses (up to 555 m) that may be suitable for salt cavern construction and hydrogen storage. These are the only known salt bodies in eastern Australia and represent potentially strategic assets for underground hydrogen storage. However, there are still unknowns with further work and data acquisition required to fully assess the suitability of these salt bodies for hydrogen storage. Geoscience Australia has transformed Intrepid Geophysics' Adavale Basin 3D Modelling dataset into Petrel. This Petrel dataset is part of Geoscience Australia's Exploring for the Future program. Files including a readme file and Petrel dataset that consists of formation surfaces, faults, borehole information and formation tops. Disclaimer: Geoscience Australia has tried to make the information in this product as accurate as possible. However, it does not guarantee that the information is totally accurate or complete. Therefore, you should not solely rely on this information when making a commercial decision. This dataset is published with the permission of the CEO, Geoscience Australia.

  • Publicly available geological data in the Cooper Basin region are compiled to produce statements of existing knowledge for natural hydrogen, hydrogen storage, coal and mineral occurrences. This data guide also contains assessment of the potential for carbon dioxide (CO2) geological storage and minerals in the basin region. Geochemical analysis of gas samples from petroleum in the basin shows various concentrations of natural hydrogen. However, the generation mechanism of the observed natural hydrogen concentration is still unknown. The mineral occurrences are all found in the overlying basins and are small and of little economic significance. The Cooper Basin has some potential for base metal and uranium deposits due to somewhat suitable formation conditions, but the depth of the basin makes exploration and mining difficult and expensive. This also applies to coal, where there are no identified occurrences or resources in the Cooper Basin. However, if some were identified, the depth of the basin would probably make extraction uneconomic, with the potential exception of coal seam gas extraction. CO2 geological storage assessment in the overlying Eromanga Basin suggests that most areas over the Cooper Basin (except over the Weena Trough in the south-west) are prospective for geological storage CO2.

  • This web service displays potential port locations for hydrogen export. This data is directly referenced to ‘The Australia Hydrogen Hubs Study – Technical Study’ by ARUP for the COAG Energy Council Hydrogen Working Group, 2019’.

  • Green steel, produced using renewable energy and hydrogen, presents a promising avenue to decarbonize steel manufacturing and expand the hydrogen industry. Australia, endowed with abundant renewable resources and iron ore deposits, is ideally placed to support this global effort. This paper's two-step analytical approach offers the first comprehensive assessment of Australia's potential to develop green steel as a value-added export commodity. The Economic Fairways modelling reveals a strong alignment between prospective hydrogen hubs and current and future iron ore operations, enabling shared infrastructure development and first-mover advantages. By employing a site-based system optimization that integrates both wind and solar power sources, the cost of producing green steel could decrease significantly to around AU$900 per tonne by 2030 and AU$750 per tonne by 2050. Moreover, replacing 1% of global steel production would require 35 GW of well-optimized wind and solar photovoltaics, 16 GW of hydrogen electrolysers, and 1000 square kilometres of land. Sensitivity analysis further indicates that iron ore prices would exert a long-term influence on green steel prices. Overall, this study highlights the opportunities and challenges facing the Australian iron ore industry in contributing to the decarbonization of the global steel sector, underscoring the crucial role of government support in driving the growth and development of the green steel industry. <b>Citation:</b> Wang C et al., Green steel: Synergies between the Australian iron ore industry and the production of green hydrogen, <i>International Journal of Hydrogen Energy,</i> Volume 48, Issue 81, 1 October 2023, Pages 32277-32293, ISSN 0360-3199. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhydene.2023.05.041