ChBE Seminar Series - Roger Aines

Wed Apr 11 3:00 pm
College of Computing (Room 016)

Unless otherwise noted, all seminars are held on Wednesdays in the College of Computing Building (Room 016) at 3 p.m. Refreshments are served at 2:30 p.m. outside Room 016.

Roger Aines, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

"The Challenge of Creating a Low-Carbon Economy in the Age of Natural Gas"


"The United States is on the cusp of dramatic changes in our sources and use of energy. Increases in oil production brought on by fracking have made it inexpensive: natural gas is abundant, wind and solar are dramatically cheaper than in the past and cost reductions will continue. These changes in energy availability have a major impact on our climate targets, both positive and negative. 

Despite US carbon emissions now having shrunk to 1991 levels, we have a very long way to go in order to reach worldwide emissions that will permit hitting a 2°C target. This goal requires an economy that emits no greenhouse gases. A major portion of this reduction (about 75%) can be done with renewables, carbon capture, and efficiency, but a remaining 25% of the required reductions has no obvious technical approach. One way of dealing with this is to develop systems that remove CO2 from the air, such as biofuels and direct air capture. These systems will also be of great interest in the likely event that we do not rapidly reduce our energy emissions, and have to rely on reducing the atmospheric CO2 concentration to avoid serious global warming impacts."


Roger Aines is the Energy Program Chief Scientist in E Program, which conducts government and
private sector research in clean energy technology. He is a Senior Scientist in the Chemistry, Materials,
Earth and Life Sciences Directorate at LLNL. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Chemistry from
Carleton College, and Doctor of Philosophy in geochemistry from the California Institute of
Technology. He has been at LLNL since 1984 working on nuclear waste disposal, environmental
remediation, application of stochastic methods to inversion and data fusion, management of carbon
emissions including separation technology, and monitoring and verification methods for sequestration.
Roger’s career has involved a close coupling of scientific research, engineering, field demonstration, and
assessment of future development needs for technology. His research interests include the chemistry of
natural and engineered processes, including carbon dioxide separation and water treatment. Roger’s
current research includes application of 3-D printing to chemical reactors and gas separations,
development of catalysts for carbon dioxide capture, management of pressure in geologic sequestration
through brine withdrawal and treatment, and encapsulation of carbon dioxide capture solvents. He
previously led LLNL’s Carbon Management Program, which takes an integrated view of the energy,
climate, and environmental aspects of carbon-based fuel production and use. It supports DOE projects in
sequestration technology development for capture, and underground coal gasification. Roger directs the
LLNL program in developing better understanding of hydraulic fracturing and tools and methods around
shale gas development. He holds twentyone patents in the areas of carbon capture, shale gas production,
in situ degradation of organic chemicals through heating, and the mechanisms of thermally assisted
remediation, and has eighty publications.


College of Computing (Room 016)