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Materials & Components

in Fossil Energy Applications

A newsletter of the U. S. Department of Energy, Advanced Research and Technology Development Materials Program, and EPRI

Number 144 February 1, 2000

Development of technically and economically viable processes for the conversion and utilization of fossil fuels is a major objective of both the DOE Fossil Energy program and EPRI. Many new and different processes are being investigated in areas of coal gasification and liquefaction, improved power generation and advanced combustion. As these processes evolve to the pilot plant stage and beyond, materials selection and component design become increasingly important for reliable and economical operation. The newsletter is intended to serve as a medium for exchange of information and experiences pertinent to the use of materials and components among the communities interested in the development of fossil energy systems.

Advanced Energy Plants for the 21st Century

The U. S. Department of Energy’s Vision 21 Program has as its aim the effective removal of environmental con- cerns associated with the use of fossil fuels for producing electricity and transport fuels at competitive costs. The approach being taken builds on current clean coal tech- nology and associated research and development pro- grams, and is intended as a collaboration between indus- try, national laboratories, and academia to develop high- performance technology modules, and systems integra- tion capabilities. The ground rules for Vision 21 plant designs are set by the following objectives:

Efficiency:

• for electricity generation: 60% (HHV) coal-based; 75%

(LHV), gas-based;

• for production of fuels only: 75% utilization (LHV). Environment requirements:

• near-zero emissions;

• 40 to 50% CO reduction by efficiency improvement;

2

100% with sequestration.

Costs: competitive with alternative technologies; Timing: major benefits to be available by 2005; Module and plant designs: ready by 2012/2015.

The approach being taken in the development of Vision 21 plants is that companies or consortia can focus on individual modules or subsystems that are based on ad- vanced technologies. Multiple modules could then be integrated into a given plant. Hence, it is envisioned that plants aimed at different products or product mixes could be built from a given set of modules arranged to suit the given purpose.

The range of Vision 21 plant types is intended to allow these advanced technologies to be deployed to meet the prevailing market needs and take advantage of the avail- ability of multiple feed stocks and the need for multiple products, while contributing significantly to improving the ecology of the industrial infrastructure.

Figure 1 is a schematic representation of this philosophy. One example of a Vision 21 plant involves a gasification module (which would include the coal preparation plant) and an oxygen separation plant based on the use of advanced membrane technology. This might be followed by a gas stream clean-up module, a hydrogen-separation module (based on gas-separation membranes), and would produce a hydrogen-based fuel or synthesis gas to be used for conversion to liquid fuels or chemicals. If hydrogen were produced for use as a fuel gas, this would be fed to a power generation module which could consist of fuel cells, followed by a high-efficiency turbine module. Alternative power generation modules may comprise high-efficiency combined cycles using an advanced gas

In This Issue

Advanced Energy Plants for the 21st Century ................................p. 1 First Vision 21 projects selected......................................................p. 3 Fuel cells for power generation........................................................p. 4 U.S. developments in fuel cells.................................................... p. 8 Recent activities in SOFCs in Japan.......................................... p. 10 Industrial developments...................................................................p. 12 Books and Articles...........................................................................p. 13 Calls for Papers................................................................................p. 14 Meetings Calendar............................................................................p. 15 A Word From Our Sponsors.............................................................p. 16

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