Pilot Testing of New Carbon Capture Technology for Power Plants

April 8, 2021

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Pilot testing of new carbon capture technology for power plants

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Carbon Capture Project is the Largest Capture Pilot in the World

ACS was involved in the first two phases of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) large pilot testing of Linde-BASF advanced post-combustion carbon capture technology at a coal-fired power plant. The pilot is a 10 Mwe slipstream taken from Allman #4 at City Water, Light, and Power (CWLP) in Springfield Illinois. The project was divided into three separate phases. The first phase, conceptual design, was focused on creating a high-level plan for the project along with a timeline. The second phase, detailed design and firm estimating, involved creating detailed plans and cost estimates for the project. The third phase included the building and operating of the equipment as well as data collection and data analysis.

As the lead investigator, the Illinois Sustainability Technical Center (ISTC) released a report in conjunction with the 15th International Conference on Greenhouse Gas Control Technologies GHGT-15 in Abu Dhabi, UAE. ACS was able to provide both the procurement and construction management services for the project.

The various components of the DOE pilot test included:

  • Project organization: The project organization was simple and easy to manage with a minimum amount of contracting required and a limited number of highly experienced partners with a history of working together, providing smooth operations in the general organization.
  • Power plant testing: The power plant supplies both electricity and water to the capitol of Illinois, Springfield. The CWLO has traditional Pulverized Coal (PC) boilers and traditional pollution abatement equipment.
  • Carbon capture technology: A major advantage of the Linde-BASF technology is the ability to manage aerosols and reduce amine losses, which in turn provides an edge over other alternative solvent capture systems.
  • Detailed design and operation plan: Key success of this project required the completion of a three-dimensional (3D) model of the pilot plan layout scaled to the dimensions of the site.
  • Regulatory and permitting practices: In the second phase, the project team had actively involved stakeholders during the process of permit development and application preparation.
  • Regional economic benefits of the project: The project provides various job opportunities for those who reside in the state of Illinois.

ACS engineered all of the mechanical systems for the project, using off the shelf components where possible and fabricating custom components where needed. In addition, ACS supervised the build of the pilot plant, which included managing all subcontractors performing construction activities and keeping project stakeholders apprised of the build’s progress. Once the construction was complete, ACS stayed on site until the process gas was flowing to ensure the equipment was functioning properly and collecting the appropriate data.

The implementation of this project results in the largest capture pilot in the world and provides a consistent and reliable methodology for future retrofitting of other power plants with the Linde-BASF advanced post-combustion carbon capture technology. Not only this, but a full-scale carbon capture project could provide Illinois with exponential growth in jobs related to capital investments, somewhere between 2,130 to 3,200 ongoing jobs.