2008 Joint Meeting of The Geological Society of America, Soil Science Society of America, American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies with the Gulf Coast Section of SEPM

Paper No. 5
Presentation Time: 2:30 PM

Analyses of the Grundy Formation (Lower Pennsylvanian) in Eastern Kentucky for Deep Coal, Potential CBM, and Carbon Storage

SOLIS, Michael P., Kentucky Geological Survey, 228 Mining and Mineral Resources Building, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40506-0107, GREB, Stephen F., Kentucky Geological Survey, University of Kentucky, 228 Mining and Mineral Resources Building, Lexington, KY 40506-0107 and EBLE, Cortland F., Kentucky Geological Survey, University of Kentucky, 228 Mining and Mineral Resources Bldg, Lexington, KY 40506-0107, greb@uky.edu

The Grundy Formation of the Eastern Kentucky Coal Field includes strata from the base of the Betsie Shale to the top of the Bee Rock/Middlesboro Sandstone. The Grundy is relatively equivalent to the Norton Formation of southwestern Virginia, and the lower Kanawha Formation of West Virginia. Because the Grundy occurs below drainage throughout most of the study area, there are few coal exploration wells. There are however, many oil and gas wells with gamma and neutron logs that can be used for correlation. Density logs are uncommon through this part of the Pennsylvanian, but there are a few that can be used to verify coals within specific coarsening-upward parasequences.

The Grundy is thickest to the southeast and thins to the west and northwest. Six coarsening-upwards parasequences can be identified within the Grundy. These contain the Banner/Elswick coal zone, the Splashdam/Splitseam coal zone, the Hagy and Hagy Rider coals, the Millard/Glamorgan coal zone, and the Clintwood/Hance coal. Coal beds are generally thin and pinch out or are truncated to the northwest. Westward, coal-bearing parasequences are largely replaced by quartzarenites of the Corbin and Hazel Patch Sandstone Members.

As most of eastern Kentucky's coal beds occur above drainage or at relatively shallow depths, there has been little coalbed-methane exploration. However, parts of the Grundy and underlying formations are more than 1,000 ft below drainage in the southern Eastern Kentucky Syncline, and the Middlesboro syncline on the Pine Mountain overthrust sheet. Currently, there is no CBM production from these coal beds, but plans are being made to sample coals for their methane content. In addition, adsorbtion isotherms will be analyzed for selected coals in order to determine their potential for CO2 storage or enhanced methane production with CO2 storage.