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Partnership for CO2 Capture (PCO2C) Technology Development


Development of economically feasible carbon capture technology presents one of the biggest challenges to the fossil energy industry in the 21st century. Many existing technologies are capable of capturing carbon from coal-fired power plants, but most are expensive and inefficient. Development and evaluation of new technologies are critical steps toward economical carbon capture. To address this challenge, the EERC initiated a program to evaluate several CO2 capture technologies that are among the most advanced systems under development. PCO2C was developed with the overall goal of advancing the state of CO2 capture by evaluating and demonstrating those technologies with the most commercial viability for utility applications. In performing pilot-scale testing of these systems, PCO2C identifies the strengths and weaknesses of each technology to allow for enhanced performance and decreased costs for future applications.

The PCO2C project is being conducted in three phases. During Phase I of PCO2C, the focus was on understanding and developing two platform-based technologies: solvent-based absorption and stripping (postcombustion capture) and oxygen-fired combustion. Phase I results indicate that technological advances are the main way to reduce the costs of capturing CO2 using a retrofit oxy-fired technology. For postcombustion capture, 90% CO2 capture can be met with monoethanolamine (MEA) and advanced solvents. However, the EERC has shown that use of advanced solvents can be expected to reduce the cost of CO2 capture considerably.

Phase II of PCO2C is focused on further developing the most promising technologies studied in Phase I. Phase II will utilize the information gathered during Phase I for the development of lower-cost and more effective capture technologies as well as their integration into a total system that provides substantial economic and environmental benefits. A third phase will investigate a novel liquid–gas contactor that has potential use as a postcombustion CO2 capture technology. During operation at the EERC, the system will be tested with a flue gas stream from two separate pilot facilities simultaneously: the combustion test facility and the particulate test combustor. The ability to expand the flue gas production is expected to be a key factor in demonstrating the scale-up capability of the novel design.

Useful Links

PCO2C Partners

Combustion Test Facility

Particulate Test Combustor