R & D / Technology
Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation
・Achieves major milestone for new low cost, low emissions thermal power system
La Porte, Texas, USA— Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation (Toshiba ESS) today reported the successful first fire of its 50MWth commercial-scale combustor at NET Power’s supercritical carbon dioxide power cycle demonstration plant, a revolutionary thermal power generation system that releases few to no emissions into the air. The combustion testing is being carried out at a test rig that is built into the demonstration plant in La Porte, Texas, USA and involves the integrated operation of the full NET Power process.
The realization of clean, low cost energy is the goal of power utility companies everywhere, and the supercritical oxy-combustion CO2 power cycle is a promising solution. It uses a supercritical carbon dioxide (CO2) working fluid to produce low-cost electricity while virtually eliminating emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx), CO2 and other pollutants. CO2 is separated and collected at high-pressure within the system, with no requirement for additional carbon capture equipment or processes; it realizes near-full carbon capture without any increase in the cost of electricity.
“It’s really exciting to achieve this breakthrough in thermal power generation,” said Mr. Takao Konishi, Director and Vice President of the Thermal & Hydro Power Systems & Services Division in Toshiba ESS. “The successful first fire takes the development program to a critical milestone for realizing an important, disruptive power system with major potential. Our goal now is to help realize a 300MW class system, and to secure our position as a global leader in the development of turbo-machinery for supercritical CO2 power plants.”
Moving forward, Toshiba ESS will continue combustion testing to evaluate the performance of the combustor and the demonstration plant. The next phase will be to integrate the combustor with a turbine that makes very efficient use of high pressure, high temperature CO2 to generate electricity.
Toshiba ESS is developing the system with four leading U.S. companies: NET Power; 8 Rivers Capital; McDermott; and Exelon Generation. Toshiba ESS delivered the turbine and combustor that are the key components of the system in 2016 and 2017, respectively.
Toshiba ESS will continue to contribute to the mitigation of climate change by supplying environmentally friendly power generation systems.
The plant burns a mixture of natural gas and oxygen combined with CO2 to produce a working fluid gas, a mix of mainly CO2 and a small amount of H2O that is used to drive the turbine generator. This working fluid is then cooled through a heat exchanger and H2O is separated out to create a nearly pure CO2 stream. The CO2 stream is pressurized, and a major part of this flow is fed back to the combustor to begin the cycle anew. The remaining part of the CO2 flow can easily be collected and put into a pipeline for storage or sequestration, without increasing the cost of producing electricity.
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