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Sourcing of Steam and Electricity for Carbon Capture Retrofits

Supekar, Sarang D., Skerlos, Steven J.
Environmental Science & Technology 2017 v.51 no.21 pp. 12908-12917
carbon, carbon dioxide, carbon sequestration, coal, electric power, electricity, electricity costs, emissions, environmental science, equipment, heat, hemorrhage, natural gas, power plants, prices, profits and margins, steam
This paper compares different steam and electricity sources for carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) retrofits of pulverized coal (PC) and natural gas combined cycle (NGCC) power plants. Analytical expressions for the thermal efficiency of these power plants are derived under 16 different CCS retrofit scenarios for the purpose of illustrating their environmental and economic characteristics. The scenarios emerge from combinations of steam and electricity sources, fuel used in each source, steam generation equipment and process details, and the extent of CO₂ capture. Comparing these scenarios reveals distinct trade-offs between thermal efficiency, net power output, levelized cost, profit, and net CO₂ reduction. Despite causing the highest loss in useful power output, bleeding steam and extracting electric power from the main power plant to meet the CCS plant’s electricity and steam demand maximizes plant efficiency and profit while minimizing emissions and levelized cost when wholesale electricity prices are below 4.5 and 5.2 US¢/kWh for PC–CCS and NGCC–CCS plants, respectively. At prices higher than these higher profits for operating CCS retrofits can be obtained by meeting 100% of the CCS plant’s electric power demand using an auxiliary natural gas turbine-based combined heat and power plant.