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Program Description

The Appalachian Oil and Natural Gas Research Consortium was organized in 1989 to conduct multidisciplinary, basin-wide research in petroleum and natural gas technology. The consortium is housed at the WVU Energy Institute and is a partnership among two WVU departments ( Geology and Geography, and  Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering) and four state geological surveys
( WVOHPA and  KY)


•  Continue to identify industry needs and incorporate those needs into research proposals
•  Develop technology transfer workshops to help solve technical problems, safety issues and environmental concerns faced by industry
•  Create academic-industry consortia to address regional research problems associated with emerging plays


•  Oil and gas trade associations in seven states and regional professional societies
•  Oil and gas exploration and production companies, service companies, and gas storage and pipeline companies
•  Coal companies and coal-bed methane producers.

Benefits to West Virginia and the Nation

•  The natural gas industry is the second largest energy employer in West Virginia—and 49 of the    state’s 55 counties produce natural gas
•  New approaches to developing gas resources have led to more accurate calculations of the  nation’s known and potential gas resources, including unconventional resources, such as gas trapped in shales, low-permeability “tight” gas reservoirs and coalbed methane—all abundant in   West Virginia

Major Accomplishments

  • Coordinated the one-year, regional geologic report entitled, “A Geologic Study to Determine the Potential to Create an Appalachian Storage Hub for Natural Gas Liquids”
  • Compiled the Atlas of Major Appalachian Gas Plays — a 200-page compendium of maps and descriptions of key gas fields in each of 30 gas plays in the Appalachian region. Also produced a companion database with information about more than 5,100 individual gas reservoirs
  • Established the Appalachian Basin Center for the Petroleum Technology Transfer Council—developed and hosted 175 technology workshops attended by more than 9,000 registrants
  • Created a Geologic Play Book for the Trenton-Black River Play—a 600-page compilation of geologic maps, cross sections and data displays of the hydrothermal dolomite subplay and the fractured carbonate subplay
  • Utica Shale—Point Pleasant Shale Play—similar to the Trenton-Black River Play Book in scope and detail, includes a 175-page geologic play book and a separate book with data organized into eight appendices
  • Enhanced the Total Oil Recovery Information System—greatly expanded and improved DOE’s oil data base for the Appalachian basin by compiling reservoir and production data on more than 300 oil fields
  • Measuring and Predicting Reservoir Heterogeneity in Complex Deposystems —completed studies of the Big Injun sandstone in West Virginia and the Rose Run sandstone in Ohio; produced a book on the Rose Run in Ohio, two West Virginia Geological Survey publications on the Big Injun, and other articles and reports
  • Developed a data base and delivery system for tight gas plays—compiled various data types from numerous sources for five tight sandstone plays into one data base with a unique delivery system
  • Characterization of old oil fields—developed a combined geologic and reservoir engineering approach to characterize Upper Devonian Gordon sandstone reservoirs in the Jacksonburg-Stringtown oil field
  • Secondary Gas Recovery—developed techniques to predict the locations of fractured versus non-fractured fault blocks in the Medina-Whirlpool sandstones in southwestern Pennsylvania

    Projects 1990-2015

    • A Geologic Study to Determine the Potential to Create an Appalachian Storage Hub for Natural Gas Liquids, 2016-2017; funded by the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation and an Industry Consortium (involved geological surveys in OH, PA, WV) Assessment of the Environmental, Performance and Economic Impacts of a Proprietary Water-Based Drilling Fluids System, Phase I, 2013-2014; funded by EFD Program managed by HARC (involved WVU and TOSU)
    • EFD – Technology Integration Program, 2012-2016; funded by RPSEA through a subcontract from HARC
    • Utica Shale Appalachian Basin Play Book, 2012-2014; funded through the Utica Shale Appalachian Basin Exploration Consortium created by WVU-NRCCE; involved all partners of AONGRC
    • Mountaineer Carbon Capture and Storage Demonstration Program, 2010-2011; funded by American Electric Power Service Corporation (involved WVU and WVGS)
    • Environmentally Friendly Drilling Program, 2009-2012; funded by RPSEA through a subcontract with HARC (Houston Advanced Research Center)
    • Research Support Program for the WV Division of Energy – Phase II, 2009-2012; funded by WV Department of Commerce
    • Zero Discharge Water Management for Horizontal Marcellus Shale Gas Well Development, 2009-2011; funded by DOE (involved WVU and FilterSure, Inc.)
    • Research Support Program for the West Virginia Division of Energy, 2007-2008; funded by WV Department of Commerce (involved WVU and WVGS)
    • Improving the Availability and Delivery of Critical Information for Tight Gas Development , 2005-2008, funded by DOE (involved WVU and the geological surveys in PA and WV)
    • Sequestration of Carbon Dioxide in Appalachian Coals, 2005-2010; funded by DOE (subcontract from Montana State; involved WVU and CONSOL Energy)
    • Creating a Geologic Play Book for Trenton-Black River Appalachian Basin Exploration, 2003-2005, funded by DOE (involved WVU and the geological surveys in NY, OH, PA, WV, KY)
    • Enhancing Reservoir Management in the Appalachian Basin by Identifying Technical Barriers and Preferred Practices, 2001-2003, funded by DOE NETL-Tulsa (involved PNGE and WVGS)
    • Reservoir characterization, Jacksonburg-Stringtown oil field, 1998-2001, funded by DOE (Involved PNGE-WVU and WVGS)
    • Coal Mine Methane Project, Cyprus Emerald Mine, PA, 1995-2001 funded by DOE FETC-Morgantown (Involved P&NGE and WVGS)
    • Secondary Gas Recovery Project, Medina-Whirlpool sandstones, PA, 1997-2000, funded by DOE FETC-Morgantown (Involved WVGS and University of Texas, Austin)
    • Enhancement of the Appalachian Basin Devonian Shale Resource Base in the GRI Hydrocarbon Model, 1995-97, funded by the former Gas Research Institute (Involved the WVGS)
    • Implementing the Program of the Petroleum Technology Transfer Council in the Appalachian Basin, 1994-present; funded by DOE 1994 through September 2014
    • Coal Bed Methane Project, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, 1990-93, funded by GRI (Involved the WVGS, Pennsylvania Geological Survey and Texas Bureau of Economic Geology)
    • Tertiary Oil Recovery Information System Enhancement Project, 1992-1995, funded by DOE (Involved the Dept of Petroleum & Natural Gas Engineering at WVU and four state surveys)
    • Atlas of Major Appalachian Gas Plays, 1991-1996, funded by DOE (Involved the departments of Geology & Geography and Petroleum & Natural Gas Engineering at WVU, and the geological surveys of Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia)
    • Measuring and Predicting Reservoir Heterogeneity in Complex Deposystems, 1990-1993, funded by DOE (Involved the departments of Geology & Geography and Petroleum & Natural Gas Engineering at WVU and the geological surveys in Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia)

    Where’s the PTTC?

    This website, once the Appalachian Region site for the PTTC, is now a part of the Appalachian Oil and Natural Gas Research Consortium. You can still access national and regional PTTC information on the  main PTTC website.

    Oil and gas information for the Appalachian region will continue to be found here, as well as information on projects conducted by AONGRC.