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Zero Emission Power Plants Coming Next Year

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posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 03:58 PM
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There are several projects out there that doing the unthinkable: a power plant with zero CO2 emissions!

How? They burn natural gas in oxygen and capture the emissions. The CO2 is then heated up to what is known as supercritical temperatures (700 °C) where it is no longer a gas but is still not a full liquid either. This supercritical CO2 (S-CO2) is pressurized and used to turn a turbine. The spent CO2 is cooled with a heat exchanger, the now condensed water is removed, the CO2 is re-pressurized ready to be cycled back through.

The only emission is water. Waste CO2 can be used for enhanced oil recovery or sequestered. I say make carbon nanotubes out of the stuff. Which is what I think NET Power means by “pipeline ready” as in ready to be sold as a product (up cycling).

Toshiba has already made, tested, and shipped the turbine to the demonstration pilot plant being constructed in La Porte, Texas.

Webwire.com, Nov. 1, 2016 - Toshiba Ships Turbine for World’s First Direct-Fired Supercritical Oxy-Combustion CO2 Power Cycle Demonstration Plant to U.S.


The pilot plant is being constructed to demonstrate NET Power's proprietary Allam Cycle technology [described below]. The fossil-fuelled power plant will have a design capacity of 25MW (50MWth), and the data from the project will be used to develop a larger 295MW (590MWth) commercial power plant.


NET Power’s Allam Cycle

The technology integrates the oxy-combustion process, in which natural gas fuel is burned or combusted with pure oxygen to generate a high-pressure CO2, which is further used to drive a turbine to produce electricity.

The working fluid is then cooled through a regenerative heat exchanger, and water is separated from it to create a CO2 stream, which is pressurised and recycled back to continue the cycle. The plant can operate on both water-cooled and air-cooled systems for cooling purposes.

The excess CO2 is a pipeline-ready CO2 byproduct, which will be supplied to third parties for enhanced oil recovery (EOR) or sequestered underground. The only other byproduct from the power plant is water.

Power-technology.com - NET Power’s Clean Energy Demonstration Plant, La Porte, Texas, United States of America.

The pilot plant plan was started in 2010 and it will be completed next year in 2017. The pilot plant is for a larger 295 MW full production version targeted for 2020. The power produced by the pilot will be placed on the grid.

If that was not enough, they are not the only group doing this! (There are a couple more doing the S-CO2 turbine deal)


* Sandia National Laboratories and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory are involved with Toshiba, Echogen, Dresser Rand, GE, Barber-Nichols in S-CO2 cycles.
* Pratt and Whitney Rocketdyne is engaged with Argonne National Laboratories in a project with aim to integrate a 1000 MW nuclear plant with a S-CO2 cycle.

Nextbigfuture.com - GE has a prototype 10 Megawatt supercritical CO2 turbine that is ten times smaller than the equivalent steam turbine.

The big savings is size. When you can make a power plant both smaller and more efficient you will end up saving money in the long run. And when you are not burning gas in the atmosphere the other emissions also drop. I for one am glad to see a demonstration plant up and actually producing electricity with zero emissions.

So, thoughts ATS? A cool thing? A good thing? The future? Still just a *meh* announcement?




posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 04:08 PM
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Add that with plasma-gasification plants to clean up the garbage:


And Gen IV nuke waste recycling to clean up all the nuclear waste and munitions stockpiles:


And then what will the environmentalists have left to scream about?
edit on 20-12-2016 by IgnoranceIsntBlisss because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 04:12 PM
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When the turbine fails, it's an explosion of superheated compressed.... liquid...? carbon.

Still better than anything we've got going, short of hydro.



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 04:13 PM
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This could definitely be super-critical to the future of the planet and of smaller plants.

Are their any safety concerns vs steam turbines i just wondering.



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 04:19 PM
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a reply to: IgnoranceIsntBlisss

Trying to save the planet wont be over night. We’ve been swimming in our own filth for decades. But at least something is being done! I fully agree with both plants! Thanks for posting that. And zero emissions is a good first step.



a reply to: lordcomac
a reply to: Biigs

I think if anything super massive blows up there will be issues! Following PV = T, if the pressure is released the temp should go down immediately turning it back to a gas. At least in theory.

But a good question. I will look around some more.



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 04:44 PM
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In its supercritical state, carbon dioxide is nearly twice as dense as steam, resulting in a very high power density. Supercritical carbon dioxide is easier to compress than steam and allows a generator to extract power from a turbine at higher temperatures.

The net result is a simpler turbine that can be 10 times smaller than its steam equivalent. A steam turbine usually has between 10 and 15 rotor stages. A supercritical turbine equivalent would have four.

Scientific America, March 2015 - Can Carbon Dioxide Replace Steam to Generate Power?

This is a general overview of why the use of S-CO2 has become a “thing” now. Current turbine technology has kind of hit a wall and the incremental increases were not pulling their weight on ROI from R&D. So they swapped out the steam for S-CO2. Which meant a rebuild of turbines. Which is why nearly two years later from the SA story we are seeing movement.

Nobody really mentions "safety concerns" so still looking.

PS - Sandia is VERY active in this research. Their cool idea is to use a solar reflector as the heat source!
edit on 20-12-2016 by TEOTWAWKIAIFF because: clarity



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 04:44 PM
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Solar will have its day too.

People just need to undo the wad and ease back.




posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 05:23 PM
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originally posted by: Biigs
This could definitely be super-critical to the future of the planet and of smaller plants.

Are their any safety concerns vs steam turbines i just wondering.


Super ridiculous pressures, really, are the concern.

To bring co2 into a super critical state, it needs to be stored at no less than 100bar- something like 1500psi.

It turns to a liquid at 800psi, so compressing it further becomes.... increasingly difficult. Although keeping it at a couple hundred degrees (hotter than steam) does help.

The good news is that the danger is local. If the system fails, it's no more violent than a giant propane tank exploding- and it releases nothing but co2. No fire, no methane, no radiation.



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 05:23 PM
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a reply to: IgnoranceIsntBlisss

That 2nd video is quite a presentation! Very interesting.

I find it very interesting that the world energy market is looking into Soviet era lead-bismuth technology which was used in the late 70's and 80's by the Soviet Navy. Odd these technologies have taken so long to catch on.



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 05:37 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

Russia just brought one on-line not too long ago (Nov. 1).

ATS: Russia's fast neutron reactor enters commercial operation.

Seems like lots of companies are starting to look at alternative methods of energy creation which is a start.



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 05:55 PM
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a reply to: IgnoranceIsntBlisss

Where does the oxygen come from?



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 06:02 PM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

Great i hope the rest of us benefit from this technology too, or will it be another look at what we made great invention that goes underground.



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 06:04 PM
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a reply to: lordcomac

in other words a "global warming timebomb"


This is really cool. In 20 years or so when solar, wind and this are all market competitive life will be pretty cool and green. once energy is nearly free, and time becomes the major limiting factor, we will be in a weird different world.



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 06:05 PM
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a reply to: lordcomac

That doesnt quite make sense, cooling a gas makes the energy in the particles less and reduces the PSI dramatically (making it easier not the other way around), superheating a compressed gas seems extremely dangerous to me but i realise thats the idea to be able to get the gas to that "special" critical state.

The safety aspect im thinking about is the sheer explosive potential, while letting a bunch of co2 out into the atmosphere isnt ideal compared the billions of tonnes of co2 burning things releases one incident isnt likely to make any difference at all - but a plant exploding seems like death through the blast+the gas choking out anyone who is in the area.

Im sure these things have been considered by the makers im just not able to find any info of the potential if a valve isnt open enough through computer malfunction or other reason.
edit on b0606600 by Biigs because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 06:06 PM
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a reply to: Nickn3

The Big Bang, according to some.




posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 06:17 PM
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a reply to: IgnoranceIsntBlisss

Awesome! Waste to energy, as long as there's money to made with garbage you know it's a great way to eliminate the immense amount of garbage that's accumulating daily. When I think about how much garbage my own family produces in a week and than multiplying that by the billions, it's always been a huge concern for me. Even though I recycle all my glass, metal and plastic bottles, I know many people don't like to take the time in separating it from their regular trash.

This will be a huge contribution to the environment of our planet!



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 06:18 PM
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a reply to: NwoDedispU

NET Power has several partners including Toshiba (who is also working on the GE project) so it seems like this is the real deal. Add to that this is out in the open and not some military facility that nobody knows about... I have hope.

I think they need to go to some conferences to talk about this because there are people out there who are trying to do useful things with CO2. A guy from Harvard has a pilot plant in Canada that can suck a ton of CO2 from the atmosphere. All these people need to cross paths to what can be done with their spent CO2. That is my wish.

I bet they find they can do something useful and together. Like, "Here, have some Canadian CO2 for your power plant" then "Gee thanks! Have some electricity!" and "Hey, can I have some CO2 to make some carbon nanotubes and graphene. I will need some electricity too?" "Sure! We just got a shipment from Canada this morning!" That way CO2 becomes a commodity not some waste product.

But first, build and demonstrate that this "greenhouse gas" is useful which appears to be the real deal to me.


edit on 20-12-2016 by TEOTWAWKIAIFF because: grammar nazi



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 06:26 PM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

Yeah it would be very good for all. What they need to do is get ordinary citizen involved, and, like you said, test it out.



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 06:33 PM
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a reply to: Biigs

The high pressures and high temperatures do pose a number of engineering challenges, and this was clearly stated in the video IIB posted (which was an excellent overview). I believe these can be overcome eventually though. (see below).

The biggest single factor in successful nuclear power plant design is standardization. The world energy community has not been able to agree on significant stable standardization and this causes nearly every facility to be dramatically different from another. These differences make unique problems the rule, and there are no standard fixes. (this is another reason I thought the video posted by IIB was excellent; although the speaker didn't highlight it, he eluded to next-gen technology being expensive, but being the best investment in the long run).

Regarding the OP, gasification of various energy byproducts has been around for decades in the refining industry. The very production of petroleum products (oil, gasoline, kerosene, etc) all use them now days. "Co-generation" is also a viable area of research as well. The problem though with co-gen facilities is ultimately we don't have enough things to do with the heat byproducts. Sure they can be used in manufacturing, but unless the manufacturing is right there they're pretty much wasted as they don't transport well.




edit on 12/20/2016 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 20 2016 @ 06:39 PM
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Just a side note...we don't want to eliminate ALL CO2 production, just mitigate excess. CO2 is necessary for plant plant growth. CO2 is not the enemy of Earth, in fact, without it we'd all be DEAD! It's a matter of degree.

Something the enviros conveniently tend to forget to tell people about.



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