The construction of the 30 MW thermal pilot plant at Schwarze Pumpe in Germany is an important milestone for the Vattenfall project. It is the necessary scale-up link between initial engineering and successful operation of the future 250—350 MW electricity demonstration plant.
The pilot plant has been in operation from the middle of 2008. The initial testing programme will run for three years. Thereafter, the pilot plant will be available for other tests. The plant is planned to be in operation for at least 10 years.
Lignite and hard coal will be combusted in a mixture of oxygen and re-circulated CO2, which also contains water vapour. The flue gas will then be treated and sulphuroxides, particles and other contaminants removed. Finally, the water will be condensed and the concentrated CO2 compressed into liquid.
The purpose of the pilot plant is to validate engineering work, to learn and better understand the dynamics of Oxyfuel combustion and to demonstrate the capture technology. Eventually, the pilot plant will be used for backup testing for the demonstration plant testing programme, once the latter has started.
The captured CO2 will be stored underground as soon as a suitable site has been identified and the necessary permit processes are completed.
Furthermore Vattenfall participate in an Oxfuel pilot project in UK.
Read about OxyCoal UK