Guide Oxy-fuel combustion for power generation and carbon dioxide (CO2) capture

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Oxy-fuel combustion is currently considered to be one of the major technologies for carbon dioxide (CO2) capture in power plants. The advantages of using.
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Post-combustion CO2 capture is a technique to capture the carbon dioxide that is emitted in the flue gas from these power plants. Chemical absorption using solvents e. MEA within packed columns is one of the most mature technologies for flue gas CO2 capture. The process to a great extent relies on the amount of the gas-liquid inter-facial area or films generated over the packing materials.


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This project will employ Computational Fluid Dynamics CFD Techniques to simulate the formation of the free surfaces area between a gas and a liquid for a typical packing design. You are expected to have a good knowledge of fluid mechanics and preferably some experience of using a CFD software package.

This project will investigate the most efficient modelling strategy of simulating the CO 2 capture process in a novel packed bed for process intensification. A combined computational, experimental and process modelling technique will be employed.


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The UKCCSRC PACT Facilities are home to numerous combustion devices: natural gas-fired gas turbines and a pulverized fuel reactor burning coal and biomass, used for CCS applications either coupled with post-combustion capture or when operating under oxy-combustion conditions. This project will use differential mass spectrometry to compare submicron particulate emissions from the different reactors using different fuels and operating regimes. This will consider the particle size spectra, particle measurement programme-correlated number and gravimetrically-correlated mass in real-time.

Particles can bypass collection systems, and therefore need to be assessed as they can interfere with downstream processes and have health implications. This will include evaluating the necessary measures to be taken to minimize impacts on flue gas cleaning, solvent-based carbon capture to minimize degradation and on CO2 stream treatment, transport and storage. This focuses specifically on nano-material enhanced membranes for improved CCS applications.

PDF Oxy-Fuel Combustion for Power Generation and Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Capture (Woodhead Publishing

The developed pre-pilot membrane modules will be evaluated under a range of different industrially relevant conditions, with a number of different process relevant gases including real and fully synthetic flue gas. This will include flue gas emissions from any power plant operating under any given conditions and with any fuel s , as well as representative emissions from industrial activities.

The operation of the membrane will subsequently allow for extensive performance assessments, ensuring comprehensive characterization of the pilot module. Such testing will enable a wide variety of conditions and thus an array of industrially significant environments to be assessed. Combination of energy generation from biomass sources and CO 2 capture technologies Bio-CCS or BECCS is already recognized as a potential option to tackle climate change in most scenarios, as it is linked to the concept of negative CO 2 emissions. A complete and rigorous model will be created and run for the gasification system, considering a range of biomass sources including wastes with different composition as raw materials.

Several CO 2 capture technologies will be then simulated and coupled to the gasification system e. A techno-economic analysis will be conducted and these options will be compared in terms of capture performance, energy consumption and cost. The use of natural gas as a fuel for electricity production is expected to gradually increase in the next decades. Since it is acknowledged that large CO 2 emission cuts should be achieved in the near future, it seems plausible that these systems may have to be coupled to CO 2 capture schemes.

The idea is to replace the typical absorber and stripper blocks present in the process simulation flowsheet by more detail-designed units built using CFD tools.

1. Introduction

This will allow for a more accurate description of the system and better characterization of the performance of the key units of the capture process. This is part of research activities that include virtual reality power industry plant simulation.

Oxy Fuel Combustion for Power Generation and Carbon Dioxide CO2 Capture Woodhead Publishing Series i

Flexible operation of fossil fuel power plants is becoming a hot topic in the energy generation sector due to the expected increase of intrinsically intermittent renewable technologies in the energy mix in the near future. This flexible operation mode of the energy systems is challenging, especially when these plants are coupled to CO 2 capture technologies.

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The performance of the whole system will be assessed under dynamic conditions. Different integration options between the power plant and the capture system will be studied and analysed from a techno-economic perspective. The gases in the flask will naturally begin to rise, so a chemical called amine is poured into the top.

The amine binds with the CO2, falling to the bottom of the flask. The hydrogen continues rising, up and out of the flask. The excess hydrogen also can be used for other energy production processes. Precombustion carbon capture is already in use for natural gas, and provides a much higher concentration of CO2 than post-combustion. The precombustion process is lower in cost, but it's not a retrofit for older power plant generators. As with post-combustion, precombustion carbon capture can prevent 80 to 90 percent of a power plant's emissions from entering the atmosphere [source: GreenFacts ].

With oxy-fuel combustion carbon capture , the power plant burns fossil fuel in oxygen. This results in a gas mixture comprising mostly steam and CO2. The steam and carbon dioxide are separated by cooling and compressing the gas stream. The oxygen required for this technique increases costs, but researchers are developing new techniques in hopes of bringing this cost down. Oxy-fuel combustion can prevent 90 percent of a power plant's emissions from entering the atmosphere [source: GreenFacts ].

Once the carbon is captured, how is it transported to a storage location? A wide variety of filtration systems can pluck the CO2 from this mixture. Some examples currently used or being investigated are ultra-porous crystals , ammonia and limestone membranes that can selectively bind and release CO2, and even populations of algae or cyanobacteria which feed on the gas to survive.

This filtration pulls the CO2 from the flue gas, which can then be dehydrated and compressed ready for transport and storage. Oxyfuel combustion systems burn coal using flue gas and pure oxygen, produced with an air separation unit.

Near-Zero Emissions Oxy-Fuel Combustion | Natural Resources Canada

From this reaction comes heat, which is used to convert water to steam, and a mixture of flue gas and water. This mixture can be used to regulate the temperature of the boiler before being passed through a CO2 purification unit that first removes other pollutants including sulfur and nitrogen. It then compresses the CO2 and separates it from other non-reactive gases including oxygen and nitrogen to produce a stream of water that has a very high concentration of CO2. After transportation by trucks or pipeline, the liquid gas is pumped into porous rock formations that can be kilometres below the surface.

At these depths, the temperature and pressure keeps the gas in its liquid form where it is trapped within the geological layer. Depleted oil fields are often used as storage tanks because a large amount of geological data is readily available, produced during the prospecting process.

How Carbon Capture Works

Digital Issues Buy a back issue. Renew my subscription Give a Gift Manage my subscription. Explainer Technology 28 September How does carbon capture and storage work? Jake Port looks at one approach to the control of carbon emissions in the latest of the tech explainers series. Emissions from a coal-fired power station in the Latrobe Valley, Victoria, Australia.

Can we bury the carbon dioxide problem?