skip to main content

Title: Leakage Risk Assessment of CO{sub 2} Transportation by Pipeline at the Illinois Basin Decatur Project, Decatur, Illinois

The Illinois Basin Decatur Project (IBDP) is designed to confirm the ability of the Mt. Simon Sandstone, a major regional saline-water-bearing formation in the Illinois Basin, to store 1 million tons of carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) injected over a period of three years. The CO{sub 2} will be provided by Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) from its Decatur, Illinois, ethanol plant. In order to transport CO{sub 2} from the capture facility to the injection well (also located within the ADM plant boundaries), a high-pressure pipeline of length 3,200 ft (975 m) has been constructed, running above the ground surface within the ADM plant footprint. We have qualitatively evaluated risks associated with possible pipeline failure scenarios that lead to discharge of CO{sub 2} within the real-world environment of the ADM plant in which there are often workers and visitors in the vicinity of the pipeline. There are several aspects of CO{sub 2} that make its transportation and potential leakage somewhat different from other substances, most notable is its non-flammability and propensity to change to solid (dry ice) upon strong decompression. In this study, we present numerical simulations using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) methods of the release and dispersion of CO{sub 2} frommore » individual hypothetical pipeline failures (i.e., leaks). Failure frequency of the various components of a pipeline transportation system over time are taken from prior work on general pipeline safety and leakage modeling and suggest a 4.65% chance of some kind of pipeline failure over the three-years of operation. Following the Precautionary Principle (see below), we accounted for full-bore leakage scenarios, where the temporal evolution of the mass release rate from the high-pressure pipeline leak locations was simulated using a state-of-the-art Pipe model which considers the thermodynamic effects of decompression in the entire pipeline. Failures have been simulated at four representative locations along the pipeline route within the ADM plant. Leakage scenarios at sites along the route of the pipeline, where plant operations (e.g., vehicular and train transportation) seem to present a higher likelihood of accidental failure, for example due to vehicles or equipment crashing into the pipeline and completely severing it, were modeled by allowing them to have a double source consistent with the pipeline releasing high-pressure CO{sub 2} from both ends of the broken pipe after a full-bore offset rupture. Simulation results show that the built environment of the plant plays a significant role in the dispersion of the gas as leaking CO{sub 2} can impinge upon buildings and other infrastructure. In all scenarios simulated, the region of very high-concentration of CO{sub 2} is limited to a small area around the pipeline failure, suggesting the likelihood of widespread harmful CO{sub 2} exposure to plant personnel from pipeline leakage is low. An additional risk is posed by the blast wave that emanates from a high-pressure pipeline when it is breached quickly. We estimate the blast wave risk as low because it occurs only for a short time in the immediate vicinity of the rupture, and requires an instantaneous large-scale rupture to occur. We recommend consideration of signage and guard rails and posts to mitigate the likelihood of vehicles crashing into the pipeline. A standardized emergency response plan applicable to capture plants within industrial sites could be developed based on the IBDP that would be useful for other capture plants. Finally, we recommend carrying out coupled wellbore-reservoir blowout scenario modeling to understand the potential for hazardous conditions arising from an unexpected blowout at the wellhead.« less
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC)
Country of Publication:
United States