Alstom demonstrates CO2 capture

Alstom has signed joint development contracts with E.ON and Statoil to build demonstration plants using Alstom’s new chilled ammonia technology for CO2 capture from flue gases. The method is specifically aimed at natural gas combined cycle (NGCC) power plants.

For E.ON, Alstom is to launch a 5MW CO2 capture demonstration plant at Karlshamn Power Plant in southern Sweden, due to begin operation in 2008. The companies plan to introduce the technology in other Swedish power plants after technical evaluation.

The agreement with Statoil covers the design and construction of a 40MW test and product validation facility at Statoil’s Mongstad refinery in Norway. This facility will be designed to capture at least 80,000 tonnes per year of CO2 from flue gases from the refinery’s cracker unit or from a new combined heat and power plant being built by Statoil and scheduled to be in operation by 2010. The test and product validation facility is expected to enter operation by 2009-2010 with the first operation and testing phase to last 12-18 months.

According to Alstom, the chilled ammonia technology holds great promise for controlling NGCC as well as other industry generated emissions economically and with a significantly low energy loss.

Alstom cites research which suggests that chilled ammonia-based CO2 capture can remove up to 90 per cent of the CO2 from flue gases. Compared to several proposed techniques that can separate carbon dioxide from the other gases, the chilled ammonia process could greatly reduce the amount of energy used to capture CO2. According to Alstom, studies demonstrate the technology may result in an energy loss of approximately 10 per cent versus other methods of post-combustion CO2 separation, which result in losses of nearly 30 per cent.