Natural gas power with zero emissions?

US start-up Net Power has created a power plant that uses CO2 exhaust in an innovative way.

The La Porte, Texas prototype power plant constructed last year is currently completing operational tests. The 25MW plant uses high pressure streams of pure CO2 to drive specially augmented Toshiba turbines, replacing steam. The combustor burns natural gas with 95% pure oxygen extracted from air to yield highly concentrated CO2. By-product nitrogen and argon from the air separator are sold, and the high purity CO2 will be sold or injected into nearby oil wells.

The power plant is the focus of a heavy US$100 million investment by Japanese tech giant Toshiba. All eyes are on to see if the start-up can compete with conventional modern gas-fired power plants with carbon-capture.

Read more: Nature / IEEE Spectrum / PowerMag 

Image: NET Power and McDermott – Demo power plant in Texas

This story is taken from the 08 June 2018 edition of The Warren Centre’s Prototype newsletter. Sign up for the Prototype here.