265227 The Role of Open Innovation in Development of Futuristic Technologies for Carbon Capture in Coal-Fired Power Plants: An Academic Perspective

Monday, October 29, 2012: 2:10 PM
Oakmont (Omni )
Asad H. Sahir1, JoAnn S. Lighty1 and Lyda Bigelow2, (1)Chemical Engineering, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, (2)Management, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT

Coal is an important fossil fuel resource for electricity generation which also contributes to significant CO2 emissions. The process of capturing carbon dioxide for utilization and sequestration is an important area of research in this domain. Academia-industry collaborations are playing a significant role in the development of Oxy-fired combustion (OFC) and Chemical Looping Combustion (CLC), two technologies under consideration. In Oxy-fired combustion (OFC), an air separation unit is used to separate oxygen from air and then the coal is combusted to produce energy. In contrast to OFC, Chemical Looping Combustion (CLC) involves the circulation of an oxygen carrier between interconnected fluidized beds to supply oxygen for combustion of fuel. The objective of both technologies is to burn coal in a primarily oxygenated environment to obtain a pure stream of CO2.

Although OFC and CLC have different technological pathways, they have similarities in their historical development from a laboratory scale to pilot scale. Universities, in collaboration with industry, are continuing to play an important role in the development of these technologies to the pilot scale. Thus OFC and CLC could be visualized as examples of practicing open innovation in development of carbon capture technologies. Facilitating collaboration in the pursuit of solutions to technologically complex problems can produce benefits such as decreased development time and costs. This talk will discuss the possible pathways which these technologies could undertake based on studies of power plant technologies and environment regulation technology components (e.g. catalytic converters). It will also highlight possible challenges in terms of market economics, scale, and technology-enabling legislation which have the potential to frame future scenarios.

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