This MIT project will develop and assess a slurry feeding system based on a suspension of coal in liquid CO2 that can be pumped into a high-pressure gasifier. The advantages of this solution are that CO2 has a low heat capacity, a low heat of vaporization and low viscosity. Thus, the liquid CO2 imposes a much smaller thermal load on the gasifier relative to a water slurry, and has the potential to improve the efficiency and economics of integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) power plants with carbon capture and dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions from coal fired power plants.
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology project is developing and assessing a coal-CO2 slurry feeding system. As opposed to conventional coal-water slurry feeding, the coal-CO2 slurry feeding approach avoids the thermal efficiency loss incurred by addition of slurry water, particularly when feeding low-rank coals already high in moisture content, and allows high-pressure operation while avoiding the high capital cost and limited pressure range of dry coal feeding using lock-hopper technology. This new coal feeding method has the potential to improve the efficiency and economics of coal-based power generation with carbon capture and reduce the costs of converting coal to gasoline and diesel fuels.
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