Gasifier: Commercial Gasifiers: Entrained Flow Gasifiers
The Huaneng Clean Energy Research Institute (HCERI), formerly Thermal Power Research Institute (TPRI), has developed and patented gasification technology that is being used in numerous gasification facilities throughout China. The technology has been developed and refined for over 16 years.
HCERI gasification technology is a two-stage dry-feed, water-cooled gasifier. The first stage of the gasifier reacts 80 to 85% of the coal feed with pure oxygen and steam. The steam and the remaining 15 to 20% of the feed coal are fed into the second stage, which operates at about 1400 to 1500°C. The temperature of the outlet syngas is decreased to 900°C due to the second stage's endothermic reaction - helping the slag particles to solidify, as well as improving the gasifier's thermal efficiency.
The gasification technology can also be applied to other feedstocks, such as petcoke, and low quality coals with high sulfur content. Commercially available sulfur capture equipment can effectively remove up to 99.9% of the sulfur from a gasification gas stream, ensuring the plant's environmental compliance.
Demonstration and Early Commercialization
In 1996, a pilot-scale gasifier was developed to prove the chemical reactions for the gasifier concept. By 2004, the government of China's Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) funded a much larger gasifier using additional advances in HCERI's gasification technology. Following the success of this large scale trial and with the support of MOST, the China Huaneng Group, the largest utility in China, together with industry partners began developing the GreenGen IGCC project, a 2,000 tons-per-day (TPD) advanced coal power plant which began producing 250 MW of electricity to the Tianjin area of China in early 2012. The Shilin methanol plant in Inner Mongolia converts 300,000 tons-per-year (TPY) of coal to methanol. The plant was began operations in early 2011.
In addition to these plants already in operation, HCERI gasifiers are currently being deployed into several commercial gasification plants that are in various stages of completion. The Manzhouli methanol project, in Inner Mongolia, will convert lignite to methanol (producing 600,000 TPY), and is expected to start-up in 2014. The Xinsheng methanol project, in Xia County, Shanxi, will have an annual production capacity of 300,000 TPY from bituminous coal conversion, and anticipates start-up in late 2014. The Huaneng Group synthetic natural gas (SNG) project, in Zhundong, Xinjiang, will produce 4 billion cubic meters per year of SNG from bituminous coal by late 2014. The IGCC project planned for Good Spring, Pennsylvania, was dropped in May 2012, when the developer opted for developing a natural gas combined cycle plant instead.
- Peckham, Jack, "China Huaneng Gasification Technology Nabbing More Projects," Gasification News, Vol. 14, Issue 10, May 8, 2011.
- Lui, Ke; Song, Chunshan; Subramani, Velu; Hydrogen and Syngas Production and Purification Technologies, American Institute of Chemical Engineers, 2010, pg. 198-199.