Long-term succession in a coal seam microbiome during in situ biostimulation of coalbed-methane generation

Sabrina Beckmann, Alison W.S. Luk, Maria Luisa Gutierrez-Zamora, Nur Hazlin Hazrin Chong, Torsten Thomas, Matthew Lee, Michael Manefield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Despite the significance of biogenic methane generation in coal beds, there has never been a systematic long-term evaluation of the ecological response to biostimulation for enhanced methanogenesis in situ. Biostimulation tests in a gas-free coal seam were analysed over 1.5 years encompassing methane production, cell abundance, planktonic and surface associated community composition and chemical parameters of the coal formation water. Evidence is presented that sulfate reducing bacteria are energy limited whilst methanogenic archaea are nutrient limited. Methane production was highest in a nutrient amended well after an oxic preincubation phase to enhance coal biofragmentation (calcium peroxide amendment). Compound-specific isotope analyses indicated the predominance of acetoclastic methanogenesis. Acetoclastic methanogenic archaea of the Methanosaeta and Methanosarcina genera increased with methane concentration. Acetate was the main precursor for methanogenesis, however more acetate was consumed than methane produced in an acetate amended well. DNA stable isotope probing showed incorporation of 13C-labelled acetate into methanogenic archaea, Geobacter species and sulfate reducing bacteria. Community characterisation of coal surfaces confirmed that methanogenic archaea make up a substantial proportion of coal associated biofilm communities. Ultimately, methane production from a gas-free subbituminous coal seam was stimulated despite high concentrations of sulfate and sulfate-reducing bacteria in the coal formation water. These findings provide a new conceptual framework for understanding the coal reservoir biosphere.

Original languageEnglish
JournalISME Journal
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 1 Jan 2018

Fingerprint

coalbed methane
Coal
Microbiota
Methane
coal
coal seam
methane production
methane
acetate
methanogenesis
sulfate-reducing bacterium
Archaea
sulfate-reducing bacteria
Sulfates
formation water
Acetates
acetates
subbituminous coal
Bacteria
Isotopes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Cite this

Long-term succession in a coal seam microbiome during in situ biostimulation of coalbed-methane generation. / Beckmann, Sabrina; Luk, Alison W.S.; Gutierrez-Zamora, Maria Luisa; Hazrin Chong, Nur Hazlin; Thomas, Torsten; Lee, Matthew; Manefield, Michael.

In: ISME Journal, 01.01.2018.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Beckmann, Sabrina ; Luk, Alison W.S. ; Gutierrez-Zamora, Maria Luisa ; Hazrin Chong, Nur Hazlin ; Thomas, Torsten ; Lee, Matthew ; Manefield, Michael. / Long-term succession in a coal seam microbiome during in situ biostimulation of coalbed-methane generation. In: ISME Journal. 2018.
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