CCS and Power Systems

Carbon Capture - Post-Combustion Capture

National Carbon Research Center at the Power Systems Development Facility

Performer: National Carbon Capture Center

Project No: NT0000749


  • DOE and NCCC jointly developed and instituted a Technology Screening Process (TSP) as an evaluation tool to assess and prioritize technologies for testing. The current TSP inventory contains more than 300 candidate technologies and is updated annually to ensure inclusiveness of the list.

  • A preliminary screening study was conducted with favorable results for oxy-combustion CO2 capture using the pressurized transport reactor. Detailed system studies, modeling, and additional economic analysis are in progress to further evaluate commercial feasibility of this technology.

  • A pilot solvent test unit (PSTU) for testing developers’ next generation of CO2 absorption solvents has been designed, constructed, and commissioned. This is one of three major areas included in the Post-Combustion Carbon Capture Center (PC4) test facility, Figure 1, which is being built to accommodate tests of a wide-range of capture technologies from flue gas. Testing of advanced solvents in the PSTU, CO2-selective membranes, and CO2 sorbents will begin in late 2011.

  • The Syngas Conditioning Unit (SCU) in the pre-combustion CO2 capture area has been modified to improve the gas analyzer capability, increase the electrical and instrumentation infrastructure, upgrade the temperature control systems, and increase the syngas flow for membrane testing.

  • Five test campaign runs have been carried out in support of CO2 capture technology testing. Reliable syngas produced with either Powder River Basin (PRB) sub-bituminous coal, lignite coal, or coal/biomass co-feed was delivered to the SCU at various quality and conditions. A number of advanced CO2 absorbing chemical and physical solvents, various hydrogen- and CO2-selective membranes, Water Gas Shift (WGS) catalysts, high temperature mercury capture sorbents, and solid oxide fuel cells were tested. Performance data generated have been used to validate laboratory data under ideal conditions and allow for engineering design for scale up.

  • WGS catalyst tests have been conducted which reveal that steam-to-carbon monoxide (CO) ratios can be reduced, which in turn increases the net power output of an Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) plant and reduces the cost of electricity with CO2 capture. Results have been supplied to catalyst suppliers and findings are being implemented at a commercial IGCC plant now under construction. The impact at one plant translates to an operational savings of over $200 million over the life of the plant.

Project Details