CONSTRUCTION work will begin on Carbon Energy's $A20 million Underground Coal Gasification demonstration project at Bloodwood Creek in South East Queensland with engineering and project management company Thomas & Coffey at the helm.
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3 UGC Module Power Plant. Courtesy Metex Resources.

Carbon Energy, a subsidiary of Metex Resources, appointed Brisbane-based Thomas & Coffey this week. The appointment enables the engineering firm to commence preliminary works pending permits and approvals.

"This marks another important milestone following our recent move to acquire 100 percent ownership of the UCG technology held through our joint venture with CSIRO, Carbon Energy Pty Ltd," Metex managing director Ian Walker said.

Carbon Energy is in the process of becoming a wholly owned subsidiary of Metex.

The trial, to begin next year, is the largest of its kind ever undertaken in Australia, Walker said.

The development will include the construction of a 1 petajoule per annum syngas module.

The Bloodwood Creek trial site is within a defined coal resource of more than 100 million tonnes, which is estimated to contain 2000PJ of energy, with about 1000PJ being potentially recoverable utilising Carbon Energy's UCG process.

The technology involves drilling boreholes from surface to the underground coal seam, and gasifying the coal in-situ to produce a syngas suitable for conversion into feedstock for power generation, or for conversion into ultra-clean liquid fuels and chemicals.

Metex said UCG promises to significantly reduce the cost of introducing new clean coal technologies, by cutting costs at the coal gasification stage.

Carbon Energy has three commercial-scale options for the project under consideration.