Pulverised coal combustion (PCC) power plant with supercritical (SC) steam parameters have been operational for over forty years and ultra-supercrital (USC) PCC plant have been operational for just over twenty years. This significant amount of operating experience is valuable regarding the performance of high temperatures steels. For example 9-12% chromium martensitic steels have had problems with cracking and some have not been as strong as they were projected to be. Additionally, PCC power plant have been operated outside of design parameters, such as severe cyclic operation, which has resulted in unforeseen problems for high temperature steels. This webinar reviews the performance, problems, solutions and research efforts for high temperature steels used in SC and USC technology.
There are many items to include when considering the sustainability of biomass for cofiring, and some of them are hard to quantify. The focus of this webinar is on the greenhouse gas emission aspects of sustainability. The reduction of greenhouse gas emissions achieved by substituting biomass for coal depends on a number of factors such as the nature of the fossil fuel reference system, the source of the biomass, and how it is produced. Relevant issues in biomass production include the energy balance, the greenhouse gas balance, land use change, non-CO2 greenhouse gas emission from soils, changes to soil organic carbon, and the timing of emissions and removal of CO2 which relates to the scale of biomass production. Certification of sustainable biomass is slow to emerge at the national and international level, so various organisations are developing and using their own standards for sustainable production. The EU does not yet have sustainability standards for solid biomass, but the UK and Belgium have developed their own.
Coal gasification for chemicals, gaseous and liquid fuels production can fulfil an important strategic need in those developing countries where coal is the primary fuel source and oil and gas energy security is an issue. At the same time, the establishment of major projects in such countries can be problematical for a number of technical and economic reasons, although it is encouraging that some projects appear to be moving forward. There are two developing countries where coal conversion projects to produce chemicals, gaseous and liquid fuels have been taken forward strongly. The first is South Africa, which established the world’s only commercial-scale coal-to-liquids and coal-tochemicals facilities at Secunda and Sasolburg respectively. The other is China, where there is a major gasification-based coal conversion development and deployment programme that is set to become a significant, large-scale commercial element in the nation’s energy development plans. This will provide further major opportunities for the deployment of large-scale coal gasification technologies, various syngas conversion units and catalysts for the subsequent production of the required products. The role of China is likely to be critical in the dissemination of such technologies to other developing countries as it can not only provide the technical expertise but also financially underpin such projects, including the associated infrastructure needs.