coal power plants and nature

Are you sure Coal will be out of the fuels for power generation? I doubt it, I am sure it will not, however it will continue with improved technologies

At its annual meeting in San Antonio, Texas last November, the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commission (NARUC) held debates on behalf of coal, natural gas, nuclear power, energy management, renewable energy, and energy storage. The head of the United States Trade Organization attended the meeting. American Power President and CEO Michelle Bloodworth, on behalf of U.S. coal producers, insisted that other participants described the resource as polluted, stale and outdated. I do understand that some people want coal to disappear, but these people also refuse to acknowledge that coal can be ignited under any circumstances and has been the cheapest resource for decades.

However, like other grid providers, reliability is the most valuable attribute, and coal producers are adapting to changing market conditions to accommodate the surge in cheap natural gas. Bloodworth believes that the variability of renewable energy is far from outdated and that the industry still has 300 years of coal supply, but has suffered setbacks due to environmental policies and market distortions, and the industry has been using innovation and technology to keep it fully utilized. Competitiveness. The above strategy.

This will enable more utilities, cooperatives and power generators to make these investments and keep existing coal fleets running at least for their expected life, as we don’t think stranded costs and investments are a good thing for consumers. This does not mean that the coal industry does not support all of the aforementioned energy strategies to maintain the advantages of coal fleets.

In the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) of the Department of Energy (DOE), the cost-effectiveness of new technologies is crucial, but in the short term (between the next three to five years) existing coal-fired power plant technology. The same goes for marketing efforts. Under its new “Transformative Power Generation Plan.” Echoing other coal technology advocates such as the International Energy Agency’s IEA Clean Coal Center (CCC), it believes that coal power needs several key attributes to compete in the future market:

  • High overall plant efficiency
  • Small size or modular, fast construction
  • Near-zero emissions.
  • Highly flexible
  • Enhanced operation and maintenance

The encapsulation of most of these attributes is a new design that incorporates a new circulation or combustion system. In the concept plan announced by the Department of Energy, for example, in October of last year, 8 Rivers Capital had committed to incorporating coal gasification into the Alam cycle, and the Department of Energy has announced that it will provide $ 7 million in funding for a small, transformative R & D program. The supercritical carbon dioxide (sCO2) project has been validated at NET Power in Texas. This technology can increase the net efficiency of coal-fired electricity generation to an average to high level by 40%.

Another project led by Echogen Power Systems, the Gas Technology Institute and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) will study an advanced technology coal-fired power plant that will integrate three innovative technologies: sCO2 power cycles, combustion in a fluidized bed under pressure and electrothermal energy. Energy storage.

Another interesting concept led by CONSOL Coal, Worley Parsons Group and Farnham & Pfile also associated pressurized fluidized bed burners and supercritical steam cycles with Benefield CO2 capture and promised flexible operation and acceptance of various coals, including high quality coal. At the same time, Barr Engineering, in collaboration with Doosan Heavy Industries, the University of North Dakota, Microbeam Technologies and Envergex, is studying the integration of 250 MW ultra-supercritical power plants with 80 MW gas turbines and energy storage devices to help achieve rapid development of start-up and charging varieties. Finally, the Department of Energy also supports the research of Nexant and Bechtel, a modular factory that uses coal-based fluids from conventional gas turbines to agitate alternative engines. The medium mines are heated but a steam blue gold background cycle is also used to maximize thermal efficiency.

The Department of Energy’s area of ​​responsibility also includes several oxygen combustion and chemical cycle combustion projects. This includes a project to design a 10 MWe combustion pilot to verify the performance of flameless pressurized oxygen combustion technology for various coals on a large pilot scale (50 MWth). This project has heavyweight partners: Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), ITEA, Jacobs, EPRI, GE Global Research and Peter Reineck Associates.

For existing coal-fired power plants, the technological emphasis clearly appears on improving efficiency and flexibility. But as explained by the AIE CCC analyst, Dr Malgorzata Wiatros Motkya, there is no single solution to make a coal-fired power plant flexible, mainly because the flexibility requirements differ according to the characteristics of the network. , market design and cost factors. For some, achieving a low minimum load is important, while for others, it is fast start and fast load ramp rates. However, the flexible operation of the plant can have a significant impact on all areas of a coal-fired power plant due to the increase in thermal and mechanical fatigue stresses which could reduce the service life of many components, reduce the heat rate and increase operating costs by an average of 2% to 5%.

In general, however, flexibility can be improved through new technologies, modification of existing technologies or adoption of new operational procedures and training of staff. Of particular note are the start-up improvements, which often involve complex and costly processes, as they require auxiliary fuels such as natural gas or petroleum. One development that has become standard in China today is plasma-free and oil-free ignition, which involves igniting coal with a stream of hot plasma. The large-scale plasma ignition and combustion stabilization demonstration project, supported by the US Department of Energy, which started in September at GE Rock Power, offers more prospects. GE suggests that this technology can save customers millions of dollars by eliminating fuel costs and providing a stable flame at low load.

Other “recent” projects funded by the U.S. Department of Energy include the development of HeatX composite coating materials by Oceanit Laboratories. Designed to reduce fouling and promote dripping condensation, the coating can be applied as part of routine maintenance to existing pre-fouling existing heat exchanger units, and shell and tube heat exchangers replenished with seawater to reduce biological Scaling. . It’s also worth noting that EPRI’s research determined whether the US subcritical coal-fired power plants (pressure rose from 2,300 psi to 2,600 psi) and supercritical coal-fired power plants (3,400–3,600 psi) to increase steam temperature through nine retrofit options Technically achievable and cost-effective from 1,000F to 1,350F, making it an ultra-supercritical and advanced ultra-supercritical unit. The project is set to end in January

It is also worth noting that the technology for component manufacturing is being improved. Advanced manufacturing includes a wide range of tools, technologies, and processes, including additive manufacturing, roll-to-roll technology and process enhancements, which are expected to improve the efficiency and economics of component design and new system manufacturing. At the same time, NETL is exploring how 3D printed components can solve the problem of hydrogen combustion by creating a better balance of ignition delay time, low-density fuel mixing and flame speed to reduce NOx emissions or developing anode and cathode parts for solid oxide fuels. cell. Complex casting technologies will also be reviewed, which can improve the manufacturing of turbine blades with complex geometries and new models of material modeling, helping to evaluate the economics of new materials for boilers subjected to cyclic loading.

Other facilities around the world are also exploring technologies, including advanced and flexible electronics, such as sensors that can be integrated into critical complex geometry components and integrated computing materials. Modularity; automation and control; development of smart sensors and new materials.

In the same time, digitization and big data can better understand the behavior and performance of components across factories and enterprises. For example, in June 2018, Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems adopted the first combustion control system for artificial intelligence boilers at the Linkou Thermal Power Plant in Taiwan. Over the years, GE has provided a boiler module designed to increase efficiency by using it with existing distributed control systems. Today, GE is working to create coal-fired power plants based on an extensive library of “learning models”. Digital “twins” can help increase speed by 30% by determining the health of components and visualizing optimization opportunities.

The greatest benefit will come from the complete automation of the instrumentation and control (I&C) systems, which will bring plant operations closer to the material limits of important components such as overheating heads. Optimizing I&C is the most cost-effective way to increase plant flexibility and should be a prerequisite for further action. Today, the industry can already use various process optimization software systems, such as those provided by ABB, Emerson, GE, Siemens and Uniper. In the near future, fully automated I&C can be interconnected with the industrial Internet of Things, allowing power plants to use technologies such as virtual reality to plan outages and simulate plant behavior. Augmented reality to support maintenance work; and Big Data solutions to unleash the enormous potential of predictive maintenance.

Source: Various

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