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Research Professor This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
(205) 567-0186

Research and Teaching Interests: Geological engineering and the nexus between energy production and the environment, compression and injection of fluids into the subsurface, greenhouse gas emission mitigation technologies, enhanced energy recovery, carbon capture and storage, compressed air energy storage, deep-well disposal of fluids, and deep-well isolation of low-level radioactive solids.

Office Hours: By appointment

Education:
  • B.S., Auburn University, Geology
  • M.S., Auburn University, Petroleum Geology
  • M.S., Samford University, Environmental Management
  • Ph.D., University of Alabama at Birmingham, Interdisciplinary Engineering

Richard has over 28 years of experience in the electric utility industry and currently serves as Southern Company’s Program Manager of Geosciences - Carbon Management, in the Research & Development Group. Richard earned a B.S. degree (1987) and M.S. degree (1987) in Geology from Auburn University. After graduation in 1987, he worked at the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) as an environmental regulator working with industrial facilities throughout the State of Alabama. Richard began working at Southern Company in 1991 in the Engineering & Construction Services Group dealing with a wide range of engineering and environmental issues related to power generation. After 15 years in the engineering organization he received a PhD in Engineering from the University of Alabama at Birmingham with focus on environmental controls and enhanced oil recovery. He then moved to the Southern Company Research & Development Group as a Consulting Engineer where he currently manages a broad research portfolio related to geosciences and engineering. He has published extensively and lectured internationally on the research, development, and deployment of energy-related technologies.

He is the current President of the Board of Directors of the Alabama Geological Society and Vice Chair of the Energy Division of the Geological Society of America. He serves on the Executive Committee in the Greenhouse Gas Division of the International Energy Agency. He currently serves on the University of Illinois - Energy Frontier Research Center for the Geologic Storage of CO2 and the Auburn University Geosciences Advisory Board. He currently serves on the International Standards Organization’s committee on developing standards for the storage of CO2 in oil fields. He previously served on the Basic Energy Sciences Advisory Committee on Science for Energy Technology (2009), on the Canadian Standards Association for the Development of Standards for Geologic Sequestration (2011), Operations & Maintenance Subgroup Coordinator, U.S. Department of Energy’s CO2 Storage and Advanced Research Merit Review Panel (2011 & 2012), and the Department of Energy’s Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research Proposal Review Panel (2008). He has received two separate Technology Transfer Awards for R&D in (2007 and 2012) from the Electric Power Research Institute.

 

Selected Publications and Presentations

  • Esposito, R., Harvick, C., Shaw, R., Mooneyhan, D., Trautz, R., & Hill, G. Integration of Pipeline Operations Sourced with CO2 Captured at a Coal-fired Power Plant and Injected for Geologic Storage: SECARB Phase III CCS Demonstration. Energy Procedia, 37, 3068-3088, 2013.
  • Esposito, R. A., L. S. Monroe, and J. S. Friedman, "Deployment Models for Commercialized Carbon Capture and Storage," Environmental Science & Technology, 2011, 45 (1), 139-146.
  • Esposito, R., Rhudy, R., Trautz, R., Koperna, G., & Hill, G. Integrating carbon capture with transportation and storage. Energy Procedia, 4, 5512-5519, 2011.
  • Esposito, R., Rhudy, R., Trautz, R., Koperna, G., and Hill, J., “Integrating Carbon Capture with Transportation and Storage,” presented at the 10th International Conference on Greenhouse Gas Technologies, 19-23 September 2010, Amsterdam, Netherlands.
  • Esposito, R. A., J. C. Pashin, D. J. Hills, and P. M. Walsh, "Geologic Assessment and Injection Design for a Pilot CO2-Enhanced Oil Recovery and Sequestration Demonstration in a Heterogeneous Oil Reservoir: Citronelle Field, Alabama, USA," Environmental Earth Sciences, 2010, 60, 431-444.
  • Esposito, R.A., J. C. Pashin, and P. M. Walsh, "Citronelle Dome: A Giant Opportunity for Multi-Zone Carbon Storage and Enhanced Oil Recovery in the Mississippi Interior Salt Basin of Alabama," Environmental Geosciences, 2008, 15(2), 1-10.
  • Esposito, R.A, Rhudy, R., Trautz, R., Koperna, G., and Hill, J. Integrating Carbon Capture with Transportation and Storage. GHGT-10 Proceedings
  • Esposito, R.A., Pashin, J.C., Walsh, P.M., Citronelle Dome: Enhanced Oil Recovery and Geologic Carbon Sequestration, AAPG Journal of Environmental Geosciences, 2007 (Abstract & Paper)
  • Esposito, R.A., Pashin, J.C., Walsh, P.M., Citronelle Dome: A Giant Opportunity for Multi-Zone Carbon Storage and Enhanced Oil Recovery in the Mississippi Interior Salt Basin of Alabama, GCAGC Transactions, 2007 (Abstract & Paper).
  • Esposito R.A., Carbon Capture and Geologic Storage – A Utility Perspective, Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) Annual Meeting, Durango, Colorado, April, 2007.
  • Esposito, R.A., MMV Protocols for Phase II SECARB Pilot Injection Projects, Southern States Energy Board (SSEB) Industrial Partners Annual Meeting and Project Update, Atlanta, Georgia, February, 2007.
  • Esposito, R.A., and Tinsley, R.J., Monitoring Protocol Design for a Carbon Dioxide Flood in Coal Seams in the Black Warrior Basin in Alabama, Paper No. 0621, International Coalbed Methane Symposium Proceedings, 2006.
  • Esposito, R.A., Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Geological In-situ Solidification/Stabilization at the Columbus, Georgia Manufactured Gas Plant Site, EPRI Final Technical Report 1009095 September 2003.
  • Esposito, R.A., and King, D.T., “Facies Analysis, Sea-Level History, and Geological Platform Evolution of the Jurassic Smackover Formation, Conecuh Basin, Escambia County, Alabama" (Manuscript and Presentation), Gulf Coast Association of Geological Transactions, Volume 37, 1987.
  • Esposito, R.A., and King, D.T., "Stratigraphy and Geophysics of the Upper Jurassic Smackover Formation in Southwest Alabama," (Abstract & Presentation), American Association of Petroleum Geologists, Annual Meeting, Volume 70, 1986.
  • Koperna, G., Riestenberg, D., Kuuskraa, V., and Esposito, R., “The Importance of Reservoir Architecture in Encouraging Plume Immobilization and Enhancing Storage Capacity,” Transaction Proceedings of the 6th Annual Conference on Carbon Capture and Storage, 7-10 May, 2007, Pittsburgh, PA.
  • Koperna, G, Pashin, J, and Esposito, R., Modeling of the Warrior Basin Enhanced Coal Bed Methane Sequestration Pilot, SPE # 111283, Transactions of the 2007 SPE Eastern Regional Meeting, 17-18, October, Lexington, KY (Abstract & Paper).
  • Phillips, AJ, Troyer, E, Hiebert, R, Kirksey, J, Rowe, W, R, Gerlach, R, Cunningham, A, Esposito, R, Spangler, L. (2018) Enhancing wellbore cement integrity with microbially induced calcite precipitation (MICP): a field scale demonstration Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering, Volume 171, Pages 1141-1148
  • Phillips AJ, Cunningham, A, Gerlach, R, Hiebert, R, Hwang, C, Lomans, B, Westrich, J, Mantilla, C, Kirksey, J, Esposito, R, and Spangler, L. (2016) Fracture sealing with microbially-induced calcium carbonate precipitation: A field study. Environmental Science and Technology, 50 (7), pp 4111-4117
  • Cunningham, A, Lauchnor, E, Eldring, J, Esposito, R, Mitchell, AC, Gerlach, R, Phillips, AJ, Ebigbo, A, and Spangler, L. (2013), Abandoned well CO2 leakage mitigation using biologically induced mineralization: current progress and future directions, Greenhouse Gas Science & Technology, 3:40-49
  • Phillips, AJ, Lauchnor, E, Eldring, J, Esposito R, Mitchell, AC, Gerlach, R, Cunningham, A, and Spangler, L. (2013), Potential CO2 leakage reduction through biofilm-induced calcium carbonate precipitation, Environmental Science & Technology, 47 (1):142-149
  • Trabucchi, Chiara, Michael Donlan, Vadim Spirt, Scott Friedman and Richard Esposito. “Application of a Risk-Based Probabilistic Model (CCSvt Model) to Value Potential Risks from Carbon Capture and Storage,” Energy Procedia, Volume 63, 12th International Conference on Greenhouse Gas Control Technologies, GHGT-12 (2014) Pages 7608-7618
  • Koperna, G., Riestenberg, D., Kuuskraa, V., and Esposito, R., “The Importance of Reservoir Architecture in Encouraging Plume Immobilization and Enhancing Storage Capacity,” presented at the 6th Annual Conference on Carbon Capture and Storage, 7-10 May, 2007, Pittsburgh, PA.
  • Koperna, G., Riestenberg, D., Rhudy, R., Trautz, R., Hill, J., and Esposito, R., “The SECARB Anthropogenic Test: The First U.S. Integrated CO2 Capture, Transportation and Storage Project,” presented at the 2011 AIChE Spring Meeting, March 13-17, 2011, Chicago, IL.
  • Koperna, G., Riestenberg, D., Kuuskraa, V., Rhudy, R., Trautz, R., Hill, G. R., & Esposito, R. The SECARB Anthropogenic Test: A US Integrated CO2 Capture, Transportation and Storage Test. International Journal of Clean Coal and Energy, 1(2), 13-26, 2012.
  • Petrusak, R., Riestenberg, D., Cyphers, Esposito, R. and Pashin, J. Geologic Characterization of the Lower Cretaceous Paluxy Formation for the SECARB Partnership Phase III Anthropogenic Test. Proceedings of the 9th Annual Conference on Carbon Capture and Sequestration, May, 2010.
  • Middleton, R.S., Keating, G.N., Stauffer, P.H., Jordan, A.B., Viswanathan, H.S., Kang, Q., Sullivan, E.J., Chu, S.P., Carey, J.W., Mulkey, M.L., Esposito, R.A., Meckel, T.A. (2012). The cross-scale science of CO2 capture and storage: from pore scale to regional scale, Energy and Environmental Science 5, 7328-7345
  • Petrusak, R., Cyphers, S., Bumgardner, S., Hills, D., Pashin, J., and Esposito, R. Saline Reservoir Storage in an Active Oil Field: Extracting Maximum Value from Existing Data for Initial Site Characterization; Southeast Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership (SECARB) Phase IIII ‘Anthropogenic CO2’ Test at Citronelle Field. SPE International Conference on CO2 Capture, Storage and Utilization. SPE 139700. November 10-12, 2010.
  • Petrusak, R., Riestenberg, D., Goad, P., Schepers, K., Pashin, J., Esposito, R., & Trautz, R. World class CO2 sequestration potential in saline formations, oil and gas fields, coal, and shale: The US southeast regional carbon sequestration partnership has it all. In SPE International Conference on CO2 Capture, Storage, and Utilization, 2009.