Norway has launched a NOK 317-million (US$59 million) research and development program to develop more cost-effective technology for CO2 capture. The project is one of the biggest of its kind to date.
SINTEF, the independent research organization, The Norwegian University of Science and Technology and Aker Clean Carbon signed an agreement for an eight-year science and development programme called SOLVit.
Aker Clean Carbon and SINTEF have together developed many capture solutions based on amines. One of these solutions is already ready to use. Phase one of SOLVit, which runs until the end of 2010, will be used to test the other amine solutions under development by Aker Clean Carbon and SINTEF.
In phase two and three of SOLVit, the parties will try to introduce new chemical solutions and elements to the process in order to generate cost cuts. The aim is to come up with a process facility for CO2-capture that can operate on half the energy consumption of today’s processes.
The program includes building a new laboratory at Tiller in Trondheim, which will cost NOK 42 million. SINTEF will provide NOK 25 million of the equity for the new laboratory, which will be situated next door to SINTEF’s multi-phase laboratory.
The lab will be a test center for pilot projects, including a 30 meter tall tower and processing column that reached 25 meters high—identical to the height needed in full-scale industrial facilities. The lab will also be available for SINTEF’s domestic and international customers and partners.
The SOLVit program will also involve the testing of chemicals and processes in a mobile capture facility, which has been developed by Aker Clean Carbon and is currently being built at Aker Verdal. The mobile facility is large enough to process parts of emissions from power stations and industrial sites in periods of several months at the time.