London April 2017 Biannual: International CCS

This blog was produced by Lulwa Almahmeed, Hui Meng and Kelachi Omehia


Mohammad Abu Zahra

The first speaker, Dr. Mohammad Abu Zahra is the chemical and environmental engineering department head and a professor at Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, U.A.E. and his research concentrates on developing technologies for the capturing of carbon dioxide such as advanced solid sorbents, solvents and novel processes.

Masdar has the major areas of research: C02 capture technology, CO2 storage, injection and monitoring and CCS policies and regulations. Al Reyadah is taking charge of the development and deployment of CO2 capture. It is established in Abu Dhabi for developing large-scale projects related to carbon capture in the UAE and building networks. It is a joint venture between Masdar and the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company. They work with Al Hosn Gas, which is another source of carbon dioxide, with ADNOC for EOR, with research institutes like Masdar to develop new technologies but also they started talking with other major bulk sources of CO2 such as the power sector and the aluminium industry. The first project worked upon was the Emirates steel project. The CO2 that was emitted from the steel industry to the atmosphere is now being treated and compressed and used for EOR. 800,000 pounds of CO2 per year is captured and nearly 98% is transported in pipelines to oil fields in ADNOC. The pipeline goes from the industrial area in Abu Dhabi to 45km in the desert where the oil field is and from there it will be distributed between 3 or 5 injection sites.

Other projects that Masdar are working on are:

  • Working on global solvent development with MIT in 2011 by focusing on organic binding solvent and on lean based solvent through looking at aqueous, organic and a mix of both and trying to identify some blends and new materials.
  • Working on solid solvent development with RTI in North Carolina which was taken from the fundamental development of the solid solvent all the way to pilot plant and the scale up of the solid material in which they looked at the economics, the operational challenges and the scale-up challenges of the solid material.
  • Working on carbon dioxide utilisation and using some environmental waste such as fly ash and waste from the desalination and rejected brine and convert that into useful materials with ENGSL. The rejected brine is the one of the major problems in the Gulf countries as there is no water and the water demand is increasing, desalination capacity increasing and for each 1 m3 of clean water, another 2 m3 of water is wasted.


Rodney Allam

The second speaker was Rodney John Allam from NetPower, USA. Rodney is a British chemical engineer and fellow of the Institute of Chemical Engineers (IChemE). He is credited with the invention of the ALLAM cycle which is a power generation cycle for fossil fuels with integrated carbon capture.

There are steps involved in the ALLAM cycle. The first step is oxy-combustion of the fossil fuel (an example is natural gas) with O2/CO2 mixture with adiabatic temperature approaching 20000C. The conditions of the gas at the turbine inlet after mixing of combustion exhaust gas with pre-heated recycle CO2 are 300bar and 11500C. The 300 bar recycle CO2 is preheated by a 7200C turbine exhaust. The third step is the separation of condensed water followed by CO2 compression and pumping. 20% of the total heat input is derived from an air separation unit (ASU) and CO2 recycle compressor heat of compression which assists the heating recycle. The by products are water and CO2. Pure CO2 is produced at a pressure between 30 bar and 300 bar.

The benefits of the ALAM cycle are;

  • Its competitive electricity production cost
  • Its low emissions

Currently, the ALLAM cycle is in development with a new turbine being developed by Toshiba with 300MWe of thermal power for the turbine.


Amy Brunsvold

The third speaker in that session, Dr Brunsvold is currently the Centre Manager of Norwegian CCS Research Centre (NCCS), hosted by SINTEF Energy Research in Trondheim. She presented current research and development of NCCS. The newly-launched research centre funded under the Centres for Environment, NCCS will enable fast-track CCS deployment through industry-driven science-based innovation, addressing the major barriers identified within demonstration and industry projects, aiming at becoming a world-leading CCS centre.

NCCS comprises of international oil and gas companies, CCS technology vendors and technology users in the private and public domain. The partnership will provide access to world-class scientists, state-of-the-art laboratories and research facilities and advanced simulation tools that will be expanded and complemented in NCCS.

NCCS will focus on two industry-driven deployment cases to provide consistent, targeted research in areas that will contribute most significantly to large-scale CCS deployment:

The Norwegian full-scale CCS chain capturing CO2 from industrial sources in Norway and transporting it by ship for storage on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS).
Storing Europe’s CO2 in the North Sea Basin capturing CO2 from a variety of sources in Europe and transporting it via a pipeline network to Norwegian storage sites.

The meeting was well organised and each aspect of the meeting was motivating and exciting. I greatly enjoyed it all.