Industrial Technology Research Institute, Taiwan’s largest high-tech applied research institutions, says its high efficiency calcium looping technology (HECLOT), a calcium looping technology, can achieve a carbon capture rate of up to 90 percent.
ITRI says this is an industry first.
The technology reduces energy consumption using a cycling of calcination and carbonation method used to capture CO2, which ultimately enables coal-fired power generation to become clean electricity.
HECLOT is able to achieve an initial capture cost lower than $30 per metric ton of CO2 in a fossil fuel power plant, saving more than half when compared to the current capture cost of $58 per metric ton of CO2, ITRI says.
The capital cost of a HECLOT power plant is $125 million for a 50 MWe unit, which the institute says is much less than the current cost of around $5 billion for existing CO2 capture technology. This will make it easier to raise capital for HECLOT power plants, which would result in a higher and faster financial return on investment.
HECLOT can also be integrated into retrofitted plants.
Additionally, HECLOT will allow CO2 to be injected underground for enhanced oil recovery and enhanced gas recovery, allowing plants to generate more oil and gas.
HECLOT captures CO2 in the combustion fume coming out of power plant boilers. It uses calcium from limestone (CaCO3) as the carbon capture medium. Calcium is looped between two chemical reactions involving CaO and CaCO3 to capture and release CO2. In the capture, or carbonation reaction, calcium in CaO captures CO2 and becomes CaCO3. In the second reaction, the so-called calcination reaction, CaCO3 is reduced back to CaO, and CO2absorbed in the first reaction and is released at high purity in the second reaction. By looping between these two reactions, CO2 can be collected and then stored away.
Cement production accounts for 5 percent of global CO2 emissions and is the second most consumed substance on earth after water. In June 2013, ITRI signed a patent licensing and technology transfer agreement with Taiwan Cement to build the world’s largest calcium looping pilot plant where 1 metric ton of carbon will be captured per hour.
In the future, HECLOT will be available for licensing to cement manufacturers and fossil-fuel power plants worldwide. ITRI holds three patents and 16 pending patents internationally on HECLOT technology.