Linde North America Inc., in partnership with the University of Illinois, has won two U.S. Department of Energy grants to research and improve technologies to capture carbon emissions from power plants.
The grants provide a total of $3.65 million in federal funding for the two projects, both of which began in April, and which are the first step in deploying the technology at a large pilot facility.
“This represents a significant step toward addressing climate change,” said Krish Krishnamurthy, Head of Group R&D – Americas in the Technology & Innovation Function for The Linde Group. “These two projects are key to improving energy efficiency and scaling up cost-effective, post-combustion carbon capture technology for power plants.”
On one project, which runs through 2020, Linde is taking the lead role to develop and validate technologies to minimize solvent loss in the post-combustion carbon capture process by pre-treating flue-gas laden with aerosols. Reducing solvent loss by mitigating the effect of aerosols improves the efficiency of carbon capture systems and makes them more economically viable. Testing will be performed at the University of Illinois’ Abbott power plant, which supplies power and steam to the campus.
“From a global perspective, coal continues to be an important fuel for electricity generation,” said Dr. Kevin O’Brien, director of the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center and interim director of the Illinois State Water Survey. “It is necessary to take steps to make fossil-powered power plants more sustainable. This is an opportunity for Illinois to position itself as a global leader in capture research and development.”
Washington University in St. Louis, which has a leading capability in aerosol science, is also a project partner.
On the second project, which the DOE is awarding in annual phases, the University of Illinois is taking the lead. Linde and project partner BASF will complete the design and pre-engineering needed to scale up the Linde-BASF advanced post-combustion capture process, utilizing BASF’s OASE® blue technology, at a 10-MW capacity large pilot. Linde and BASF will seek to demonstrate increased energy efficiency compared with previous pilots in Germany and Alabama and will also evaluate the suitability of two Illinois power plants for potential pilot sites.
The project team will then provide a Phase 2 proposal to the DOE for front-end engineering of the large pilot. If selected by the DOE, the team will follow up to complete the engineering of the large pilot and prepare a potential Phase 3 project, involving its construction, operation and testing.