coal biomass igcc demo successful

Southern Research Institute said that its Clean Energy Technology Development Center in Durham, N.C. combined coal and biomass feedstocks for use in an integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) coal-fired power plant. Southern Research and TK Energi A/S are the technology’s developers.

The prototype feeder creates a highly-compressed "plug" of coal and biomass so dense that the high pressure inside commercial-scale gasifiers is held back as the material is pushed into the gasifier. A challenge related to biomass utilization in IGCC power plants has been the inability to reliably feed a variety of biomass feedstocks to the gasifier as biomass-coal mixtures.

The prototype piston-driven plug feed system was demonstrated using a blend of bituminous and lignite coal and three biomass feedstocks (woody biomass, prairie grass, and corn stover) fed into a pressurized simulated gasifier environment up to 450 pounds per square inch.

The of biomass as a supplement to coal could allow power stations to take credit for the carbon dioxide that plants and trees take out of the atmosphere. The program was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy with additional financial support from Southern Research and TK Energi.

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