Power from gas + CCS at 54% efficiency?

2013-09-01 09:15 by Anja Reitz

Technology Centre Mongstad (TCM), the world’s largest CO2 capture research facility based in Norway, is currently enabling electricity to be generated from gas, with carbon capture, at 50-51 per cent efficiency.
TCM is connected to a nearby gas electric power plant.
TCM Engineers think that 52 per cent should be achieveable and 53-54 per cent possible. Bear in mind that the record efficiency for a gas power plant without CCS is currently around 59 per cent.
If there is a 51 per cent efficiency using CCS, this means that around 16 per cent of the electrical power, which would otherwise be available for electricity, is being used to run the capture plant ((59-51)/51= 0.156).
This is a lot of power, but still less than the 30 per cent power requirement estimates of early carbon capture plants.
TCM is engaging in intensive research to try to improve the 51 per cent figure.
Olav Falk-Pedersen, Technology Manager at Mongstad, believes that it might be possible to run the plant at 54 per cent efficiency, which would mean that the capture plant is drawing just 8.5 per cent of the electrical power ((59-54)/59=0.084).
If this could be achieved, it would make a massive reduction to the overall cost of CCS and improvement to its viability. 
Oil and coal prices are constantly changing, but if (for example) the coal price per megajoule was to drop to 9 per cent less than the gas price (due to it being easier to get planning permission to build new gas plants than coal plants, and a surplus of coal in the US due to the shale gas boom), then it could be equally viable to construct a coal power station with CCS, as a gas power station without CCS.  
Since it is currently viable to build gas plants without CCS, that would mean that a coal plant with CCS is economically viable.
There are the capital costs to take into consideration, but the main cost over the lifetime of the plant is the cost of the fuel.
Mr Falk-Pedersen believes that 52 per cent efficiency is “achievable”.
Source: Carbon Capture Journal, 22 July 2013

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