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Gasoline from Coal and/or Biomass with CO2 Capture and Storage. 1. Process Designs and Performance Analysis

Liu, Guangjian, Larson, Eric D., Williams, Robert H., Guo, Xiangbo
Energy & Fuels 2015 v.29 no.3 pp. 1830-1844
biomass, carbon dioxide, coal, coproducts, electricity, energy balance, feedstocks, gasification, gasoline, greenhouse gas emissions, greenhouse gases, methanol, oils, power plants
Fifteen alternative process designs for the production of synthetic gasoline from coal, biomass, or coal + biomass via gasification, methanol synthesis, and methanol-to-gasoline synthesis are analyzed, including some that produce a substantial electricity co-product and some that employ CO₂ capture, with CO₂ stored in deep saline formations or via injection for enhanced oil recovery. This paper reports process mass/energy balance simulation results and fuel-cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions comparisons. A companion paper addresses economic and strategic issues. Key findings of the performance analysis include the following: (i) For two plants designed with the same liquid fuel output, but with one co-producing electricity, the additional feedstock needed for co-production is converted to electricity more efficiently than if that feedstock were used in a stand-alone power plant. (ii) Plants using only coal as feedstock have fuel-cycle GHG emissions greater than the conventional fossil fuels their products would displace, except for a co-production system with CO₂ capture and storage (CCS) which has about 40% less emissions. (iii) Plants that co-process 35% to 47% sustainably provided biomass with coal achieve net zero fuel-cycle GHG emissions. (iv) The logistics of biomass supply constrain these latter plants to modest scales (<10 000 barrels per day gasoline). (v) A biomass-only plant with CCS has highly negative net GHG emissions and a more severe scale constraint (∼4000 bbl/d).