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Kerogen extraction from subterranean oil shale resources

United States Patent

March 10, 2009
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
U.S. Department of Energy - Visit the Office of the Assistant General Counsel for Technology Transfer & Intellectual Property Website
The present invention is directed to methods for extracting a kerogen-based product from subsurface (oil) shale formations, wherein such methods rely on fracturing and/or rubblizing portions of said formations so as to enhance their fluid permeability, and wherein such methods further rely on chemically modifying the shale-bound kerogen so as to render it mobile. The present invention is also directed at systems for implementing at least some of the foregoing methods. Additionally, the present invention is also directed to methods of fracturing and/or rubblizing subsurface shale formations and to methods of chemically modifying kerogen in situ so as to render it mobile.
Looney; Mark Dean (Houston, TX), Lestz; Robert Steven (Missouri City, TX), Hollis; Kirk (Los Alamos, NM), Taylor; Craig (Los Alamos, NM), Kinkead; Scott (Los Alamos, NM), Wigand; Marcus (Los Alamos, NM)
Chevron U.S.A. Inc. (San Ramon, CA), Los Alamos National Security, LLC (Los Alamos, NM)
11/ 675,468
February 15, 2007
This Invention was made with Government support under Contract Number DE-AC51-06NA25396 awarded by the United States Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.