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US Department of Energy invests in carbon capture technology through FEED study

Published by , Deputy Editor
World Cement,

On 06 October 2021 the United States Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory (DOE-NETL) selected the University of Illinois for US$4 million in federal funding, in addition to cost share contributions by LafargeHolcim and Air Liquide, for research and development to support the Front-End Engineering Design (FEED) study. This commercial-scale carbon-capture study, based in Ste. Genevieve, Missouri, is a partnership of the University of Illinois’ Prairie Research Institute, LafargeHolcim in the US and Air Liquide Engineering & Construction.

The University of Illinois is a leader in developing and managing carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) projects. The objective of this project is to deliver a FEED study for a carbon capture retrofit that can separate up to 95% of CO2 emissions at the plant. The captured CO2 will be pipeline ready for geological storage. Analysis of the project socio-economic impact will also be part of the study.

“While we have partnered with energy-generation facilities on many of our carbon management projects, carbon from industrial sources is also a key piece of the puzzle,” said the Prairie Research Institute’s Kevin OBrien, the project’s principal investigator. “It’s exciting to collaborate with LafargeHolcim in the US to explore the application of this carbon capture technology at a commercial scale, in a way that has the potential for significant impact.”

“We recognise that in our industry, the ability to decarbonise is the real game changer. This project selected by US DOE is another significant step in advancing large-scale CCUS technology in our industry, something we are very excited about at LafargeHolcim,” said Derick Dreyer, Head of Cement Industrial Performance, North America. “This partnership, the second of this nature in the US, is a powerful example of how collaboration across industry, the public sector and academia can advance carbon capture, utilisation and storage projects that are the critical steps to accelerating the transition to a net-zero future.”

The design will employ Air Liquide’s CrycocapTM FG system at the Holcim Ste. Genevieve cement plant, part of LafargeHolcim US, which features the largest single kiln in the world. The Cryocap FG system combines the Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) capabilities with cryogenic refrigeration technologies to achieve high CO2 capture rates with high CO2 purity rates.

“Air Liquide Engineering & Construction brings to the project, its unique, industry leading experience in CO2 capture and liquefaction technologies as well as operational experience to support the decarbonisation of this sector,” stated David Maloney, Group Vice President and Chairman of Air Liquide Engineering & Construction. “We are committed to supporting our customers and making a difference by developing solutions to help them reduce CO2 emissions.”

In addition to completion of the FEED Study, the scope of work includes a business case outlining the potential business model for commercial scalability, as well as analyses on environmental justice, economic revitalisation and jobs creation.

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