Work Package A1a: Metal-Organic Framework (MOF) materials for post-combustion and industrial capture
This work package is dedicated to identifying and producing CO 2 capture materials that can compete with the current - though not satisfactory - benchmark in the field. The potential for scale-up of these materials is to be explored using unique facilities available at UK universities.
Work Package A2a: Pilot Testing
To drive down the cost of CO 2 capture, it is essential to develop more cost-effective technologies than amine scrubbing, which has been adopted from the oil and gas industry. One such technology is solid adsorbents for CO 2 capture at power plants and from various industrial processes. The University of Nottingham has an international reputation for developing adsorbents based on activated carbon and strongly basic polyethyleneimine for these applications, research that has involved international partners in China and Korea. A pilot-scale facility for testing these new adsorbents using quantities of several kilograms is being built with £0,5M funding from Innovate UK as part of the Energy Research Accelerator across the Midlands universities. This continuous facility comprises a circulating fluidised bed for adsorption and a bubbling one for desorption of CO 2 and it will address the key issues concerning scale-up, including the thermal and mechanical stability and moisture sensitivity of the new adsorbents under real process conditions.
Work Package A2b: Pilot Testing
This work package will investigate the use of CO 2 capture and oxygen carrying materials within Cranfield's state-of-the-art pilot plant PACT facilities. These materials will be manufactured at the kilogram scale in collaboration with our work package partners. We are aiming to study the structural properties of the particles and look at their particle breakage mechanisms when fluidised under realistic operating conditions.
Work Package AC1: Bio-Energy Carbon Capture and Storage
BECCS – bioenergy with carbon capture and storage – combines the use of a low-carbon fuel source (e.g. wood), with the permanent capture and sequestration of the CO 2 released from combustion. This enables what is termed ‘net negative emissions’, which means that this process effectively removes CO 2 from the atmosphere, as when plants grow, they absorb the CO 2 , which is then captured when it is used. Extensive experimental testing at the PACT facilities has investigated a range of biomass fuels coupled with different CCS technologies, including post-combustion and oxy-fuel methods. This is vital for scaling-up project so they can be used on a larger, commercial scale and make a real-world impact on emissions reductions. The main research here has investigated the impurities in the fuels that can detrimentally impact the capture process. Key species and pollutants can have negative effects, especially on the solvents that are used to capture CO 2 . Through state-of-the-art methodologies, we have evaluated the implications of these – in particular metal aerosols and fine particles – to identify those that have the greatest impact; from this strategies can be devised to limit the detrimental effects these can have. This could involve, for example pre-cleaning the biomass fuels prior to use, or adding further gas cleaning stages before CO 2 capture.
Work Package AC2: Advanced, high-efficient cycles using GT with sCO2 or direct oxy-fired CCGT-CCS
Here, we investigate a novel system for CO 2 capture from a gas turbine. The aim is to boost the concentration of CO 2 in the exhaust of the system by partially recycling the gas. We will also investigae the potential for a radically new cycle involving oxygen firing (with recycled CO 2 to keep the temperature down).
Work Package AC3: Detailed Models
This project will construct detailed models of the applications of the new capture materials being developed in work packages A1 and A2. The models produced will be validated and used to feed back to the experimental work at Imperial College London, Cranfield University and the University of Nottingham, but will be too complex for direct use in system level models. The process models will therefore feed into the development of the reduced order models in AC5.
Work Package AC4: Integration options for hydrogen and clean power synergies
Electricity and hydrogen are two key low-carbon energy vectors to decarbonise energy used in the transport sector, space heating and industries. In the UK energy supply system of the future, both vectors may be generated in the same location: in low-carbon CCS industrial clusters with a common infrastructure. We investigate the integration of the process of hydrogen production with electricity generation from the same fuel source natural gas. The objective is to achieve cost reduction via the sharing of sub-components of the CO 2 capture process and via flexibility to cope with variations of both vectors in demand over time.
Work Package AC5: Reduced Order Models (ROMS)
PACT allows researchers to test CCS technology physically, but further testing is required to ensure the same technology will be effective on an industrial scale. This is made possible by developing process models and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models that allows researchers to upscale their findings, test various scenarios, and optimize process conditions so they can be confident that the technology is robust enough for large scale industrial application. Algorithms are also being developed to simplify and speed up the computational models used in CCS research. This is done through creating metamodels, which once complete, will be used to analyse how various carbon capture technologies can impact the UK energy system as a whole, and by policy makers as a tool to inform their strategic decisions about how CCS works at a system level.