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Pilot-scale test project begins at the National Carbon Capture Center in Alabama

World Cement,

The US Energy Department’s National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) has announced that pilot-scale testing of an advanced carbon capture technology has commenced at the National Carbon Capture Center (NCCC) in Wilsonville, Alabama.

The 1 MWe pilot plant, which is being operated by Linde LLC, is testing a Linde-BASF CO2-capture technology on coal-derived flue gas. The NCCC incorporates a post-combustion carbon capture facility that enables the testing and integration of advanced technologies using flue gas from an 880 MW pulverised coal unit at Alabama Power’s Gaston power plant. The pilot plant is expected to capture 30 tpd of CO2.

The technology used at the facility combines carbon capture process and engineering innovations developed by Linde with BASF’s advanced aqueous amine-based solvent (OASE® blue) and process technology. According to NETL, ‘OASE® blue chemically absorbs CO2 from the flue gas at a relatively low temperature in the absorption column. The CO2-rich solvent is then transferred to a stripping column where steam is added to heat the solvent, reversing the chemical reaction and releasing high-purity CO2 for compression and pipeline transport. The CO2-lean solvent is recycled back to the absorption column for additional CO2 capture.’ OASE® blue is said to provide higher CO2 loading, greater thermal and chemical stability and reduced regeneration steam requirements compared to monoethanolamine, a solvent used in other applications.

The pilot project will span 18 months and comprise three stages. The first step is the initial startup and operation with flue gas and solvent recirculation. The second stage is parametric testing, which will evaluate the impact that key parameters, such as flue gas flow rate, solvent circulation rate and regeneration pressure, have on process performance criteria (e.g. CO2 capture rate, solvent working capacity, etc). The test programme will conclude with long-duration testing at optimal operating conditions for a minimum of 60 days. This will evaluate steady-state performance with power plant cycling, pilot unit reliability, solvent stability and the emissions profile.

Once pilot testing has been completed, Linde and BASF plan to collaborate on larger-scale test projects with the aim of full-scale commercialisation by 2025.

Adapted from press release by

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