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Research Papers: Energy Systems Analysis

Real-Time Aerosol Measurements in Post-Combustion CO2 Capture Using ELPI+™ and Smooth and Sintered Collection Plates

[+] Author and Article Information
Chiranjib Saha

Southern Research,
Wilsonville, AL 35186;
National Carbon Capture Center (NCCC),
31800 Highway 25 North,
Wilsonville, AL 35186
e-mails: csaha@southernresearch.org;
x2csaha@southernco.com;
chiranjib.saha.ju@gmail.com

Justin H. Anthony

Southern Company Services, Inc.,
Wilsonville, AL 35186;
National Carbon Capture Center (NCCC),
31800 Highway 25 North,
Wilsonville, AL 35186
e-mail: jhanthon@southernco.com

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Advanced Energy Systems Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENERGY RESOURCES TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received August 14, 2017; final manuscript received November 29, 2017; published online February 15, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Ronald Breault.

J. Energy Resour. Technol 140(6), 062001 (Feb 15, 2018) (10 pages) Paper No: JERT-17-1431; doi: 10.1115/1.4038782 History: Received August 14, 2017; Revised November 29, 2017

The aerosols from CO2-depleted flue gas at the National Carbon Capture Center (NCCC) Pilot Solvent Test Unit (PSTU) and Slipstream Solvent Test Unit (SSTU) were measured in real-time using a Dekati Electric Low Pressure Impactor (ELPI+™). The coal-fired flue gas is provided by Alabama Power's Gaston Power Plant Unit 5. The utilization of ELPI+™ for aerosol research in postcombustion CO2 capture is very important due to its quick response time with size classification as low as 6 nm under transient conditions observed at the NCCC. Different process changes have been quantified at the PSTU and SSTU by multiple tests using the ELPI+™. The performance of smooth and sintered collection plates during dynamic process changes has been investigated. Between separate tests, upstream at unit 5, a new baghouse was installed. The aerosols measured at SSTU, before and after the baghouse installation, are compared. PSTU measurements demonstrated sample sensitivity to transient intercooler start-up conditions and dilution gas temperatures. During the tests, the typical concentration ranged from 106 to 107 cm−3. The aerosol's counter median diameter (CMD) for the sintered plates are lower (47–60 nm) compared to the normal plates (89–130 nm). The optical images indicate that sintered plates soak up all of the collected aerosols. The aerosol number concentration showed a significant drop after the baghouse installation. These results are promising and will enable the development of process control strategies to mitigate solvent losses and reduce operation and maintenance expenses.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Simplified process flow diagram of PSTU (FGD = flue gas desulphurization; R/L HX = rich/lean heat exchanger)

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Fig. 2

ELPI+™ measurement setup; photos taken during one of the test campaigns

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Fig. 3

Schematic of the isokinetic sample extraction system for ELPI+™ measurements

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Fig. 4

Operating principle, collection substrates, and stage assemblies in high temperature ELPI+™ unit

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Fig. 5

Operating principle of aerosol collection in different stages

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Fig. 6

(a) Normal smooth and (b) porous sintered collection plates

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Fig. 7

Real-time ELPI+™ measurements of aerosol concentrations

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Fig. 8

Effect of intercoolers on aerosol measured by ELPI+™ in real time

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Fig. 9

Effect of dilution heating temperature on real-time ELPI+™ aerosol measurements

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Fig. 10

Comparison of real-time aerosol measurements at PSTU and SSTU

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Fig. 11

Comparison of real-time aerosol measurements at SSTU before and after the baghouse installation

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Fig. 12

Cumulative size distributions measured with (a) normal smooth and (b) porous sintered collection substrates at the WTO of pilot plant

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Fig. 13

Changing aerosol number concentrations during continuous measurements with (a) normal and (b) sintered collection substrates for ELPI+™. Note: Numbers in Fig. 13 represent respective stages.

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Fig. 14

Optical images of (a) normal and (b) sintered collection substrates for a single stage after the use in continuous ELPI+™ tests

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