The Allam Cycle
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INTRODUCTION: Attacking Climate Change From Both Ends Burying Climate Changing CO2 CO2 Disposal Wells The Electricity & Hydrogen Nuke Next Door The Allam Cycle Water Geoengineering
The Allam Cycle
Allam electricity is Something
New: 440+ Patents in 30+ Countries
Better for the Environment than Renewables and Nuclear
High efficiency and low cost of electricity generation from fossil fuels while eliminating atmospheric emissions, including carbon dioxide.
The first of the practical CO2 energy machines that open the door to cheap and environmentally safe both FOSSIL fuel AND BioEnergy with Carbon Capture and Sequestration power - at the world's current burn rate for the next 4 centuries.
Despite climate change promises, most governments plan to ramp up fossil fuel production. 1.000.00.11
The highly efficient Allam Cycle electricity plant is perfect for the world's 160 countries who want to continue to use fossil fuels but end their CO2 emissions.
Taking the Allam Cycle Further - Into the BECCS domain:
A Planet Cooling, 'Super-BECCS' Power Plant That Could Potentially Sequester Massive Amounts Of CO2
The 300 megaWatt Allam Cycle power plant MUST get a Biomass adaptor as depicted above and below. It's potential as a "Super BECCS" is just too good to ignore.
The Allam Cycle power plant shown above is designed to run on the fossil fuels natural gas, coal, and lignite and to emit their carbon directly in the form of liquefied carbon dioxide ready for injection into an underground storage strata via a Class VI CO2 injection well.
Your author is suggesting that this newly developed 'Allam' technology - which was recently patented and proven in a pilot plant in Texas - could be implemented as a potentially far more efficient and cleaner BioEnergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) facility burning densified biomass pellets. While densified biomass pellets made of shredded wood fibers would work, switchgrass would be a less expensive fuel.
The design of the Allam Cycle engine in this application gives us a potentially next-generation BECCS facility, far more advanced than the BECCS facilities being currently suggested to the world by the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
The biomass-to-synthetic natural gas conversion system depicted above as '5' and '6' would have be added to convert the power plant into a "Planet Cooling" electricity generation plant that would pull carbon dioxide from the atmosphere by storing the air's carbon dioxide in the ground.
Adding Biomass to the Allam Cycle's Fuel Repertoire as A Way To Reverse Climate Change
Why Biomass? The CO2
molecule is made of one carbon atom and 2 oxygen atoms. 1 Kg of carbon on
complete combustion will produce 3.67 Kg. of CO2. Biomass is heterogeneous and
the exact amount of carbon in 1 Kg of dry biomass will vary depending on the
species and age of the biomass etc.
1. It is reported that 1 Kg of biomass contains about 450 to 500 gm of Carbon. This means 1 Kg of biomass is holding about 1.65 to 1.80 Kg of CO2. This is how biomass acts as a carbon sink. Similarly, burning of 1 Kg of biomass containing 500 gm of carbon will generate 1.65 to 1.80 Kg of CO2 and 17,070 btu of heat.
2. Heat from biomass Synthetic Natural Gas (SNG) costs more than heat from natural gas but the 60% gas efficiency of the Allam Cycle power plant is almost twice that of a typical 35% efficient fossil natural gas power plant. European coal power plants are burning U.S. wood pellets now to keep their CO2 emissions low.
3. Metropolitan Solid Waste (MSW) i.e., Garbage, is being used to make syngas to power small 50 megaWatt syngas power plants, worldwide to minimize landfill waste. Similar MSW syngas/SNG plants could add their outputs via short local gas mains to base power a large 300 megaWatt Allam Cycle plant.
Planet Earth currently has about 3 trillion trees and
might support an additional trillion. (In the United States, a trillion
is a thousand billion and a billion is a thousand million.)
It's essential we plant as many trees as possible
immediately all over the world because we will need them for removing Climate
Change from the air when the last of the fossil fuel decarbonizations has been
completed and the installation and startup of the first several hundred Allam
BECCS power plants has been completed. The Allam power plants will first be
running on natural gas and coal converted to synthetic natural gas, switching
over to biomass BECCS mode as the gasification equipment is installed. This
could be as soon as 2030 to 2040 so the first Climate Change removal
switchgrass would be only 20 years old at most.
After that, an annual
rotating crop of energy plants such as switchgrass will be needed for over 100
California has biomass electricity power plants that consume 1 ton (900 Kg) of woody biomass per hour for each megaWatt-hour of electricity produced. So, a 300 megaWatt Allam BECCS power plant could consume as much as 24 hours x 300 tons or 7,200 tons of biomass per day.
1 Kg of wood holds about 1.65 to 1.80 Kg of CO2. A 10-year old typical small tree weighs 1,800 to 4,500 Kg. 1 ppm CO2 = 2.12 Gtonne carbon or 7.76 Gtonne CO2. (IPCC and Gilbert Masters). 1 Tonne (a Metric Ton) = 1,000 kg. 1 G (Giga) = 1 Billion.
To remove enough CO2 from the air to make the air as clean as the end of the last Ice Age we would need to remove from the air: 415 ppm CO2 - 280 ppm CO2 = 135 ppm CO2. 135 ppm x 7.76 Gtonne CO2 or 1,047 Gtonne CO2 or about 1 trillion 2 ton trees.
Illustrating the Idea of Co-locating
Carbon-capturing Allam Electricity Plants and Geological Sequestration Strata
Farmers prefer switchgrass over wood because it can be farmed and harvested on poor soil using conventional farming machinery.
Why the Allam Electricity Plant?
The transition of gasoline to electricity for transportation will open an economic opportunity for a BECCS Allam Cycle electricity power plant network powered by the biofuel Switchgrass to cause a concomitant cooling of the planet. Switchgrass powered electricity plants would produce large amounts of reliable, clean electricity to the grid while the Switchgrass' carbon stream thus produced would be sequestered underground at no additional cost to remove carbon from the air to repair the air thereby cooling the planet.
Major Players: According to a contemporaneous press release, in 2012 8 Rivers launched a subsidiary, NET Power, and formed a team to pursue development of the technology:
Toshiba will develop the innovative system’s high temperature and high pressure
turbine and combustor, the key equipment in thermal power plants, by making best
use of its material, combustion and cooling technology. NET Power and [global
engineering services firm] Shaw will work on overall plant engineering and [U.S.
utility] Exelon will support development and operation of the 25MW plant, such
as selecting the site, obtaining permits and commissioning the facility.
Toshiba Signs Agreement to Develop Next Generation Thermal Power System with NET Power, Shaw and Exelon, Toshiba Corporation, 06/15/2012.
In the ensuing years, the NET Power team spent $150 million as it built a demonstration plant in LaPorte, Texas; and in May 2018 conducted the first firing test of the plant’s combustor.
Allam Cycle Engine with BioEnergy Carbon Capture and Sequestration (BECCS)
This is the first time the world has seen a proposed practical supercritical carbon dioxide (sCO2) working fluid BECCS engine.
Just like steam (water vapor, H2O) from water, CO2 gas can be used as a working fluid in power plants. Will CO2 steam become the second age of steam?
You are looking at something very new and very different. Invented and owned by NET Power, and built by Toshiba, it is a pilot version of a natural gas power plant that has no emissions stack. IT NATURALLY CARBON- CAPTURES IT'S OWN FOSSIL FUEL EMISSIONS. It has been feeding test power electricity into Exelon's nearby grid for a couple of years in La Porte, Texas, with a team of Exelon's utility power plant operators who are working up a control room from the same room NET Power's scientists used to get the plant up and running. This new thermodynamic cycle, the Allam-Fetvedt cycle, has never been built and run before and still is running since everyone wants to know if the "natives are really long-term friendly". https://netpower.com/technology/
A production 300 megaWatt full city-size version (about the size
of a typical large U.S. coal power plant unit) is currently under construction
in Japan. The Allam cycle power plant makes NO EMISSIONS that can get loose.
Versions that burn coal and lignite have been engineered, patented, and are
beginning testing. An oil version should be easy. Both steam and jet engine
power plants have been set up worldwide over the years to burn either natural
gas or oil.
This small test version strikes your author as being a very good commercial size for powering "Combined Heat and Power" plants such as the one powering the Capitol Building Complex depicted above. It is much more efficient.
There are thousands of building complexes around the world that could make good use of a HVAC power plant that burns fossil fuels. Like everything powered by fossil fuels, the plant does make emissions but they come out as the liquids water, argon, and liquefied CO2, each contained in a separate pipe. The liquefied CO2 that comes out can be mixed with "Carbfix" liquid CO2 solidifying solution and then pumped into deep underground storage vaults, becoming a form of solid limestone forever.
The Carbfix folks claim there are nowhere near enough fossil fuels on earth to fill up the known storage vaults with CO2 so mankind is good to go in that direction. Having said that, I would be remiss if I didn't remind you about coal's and lignite's ashes. But ashes don't easily get loose and float up into the air if you bury them in landfills or use them to make roads. https://www.carbfix.com/
This technology could give a real boost to the IPCC's drive to achieve some form of Deep Decarbonization in the world's energy industry by 2050.
Click To Enlarge The Above Images
(Left) For details of natural gas,
synthetic natural gas and proposed coal and
lignite adaptor processing components see pdf 2.306.02
(Right) This is what would likely be involved if a Biomass Adaptor were to be added to remove CO2 from the air to cool the planet.
(Above) Think of the combustor discharge as a rocket engine
discharge. That white plume from a rocket engine is combustion water
condensing. The Allam Engine's combustor cooling jacket is closed.
Click images to enlarge. When a gas turns into a liquid, it releases heat.
Two Schematic Presentations Of The
Allam Cycle Engine and a Photograph Of The La Porte, Texas, Pilot Plant Turbine
Supplied By Toshiba
(Right) I've been looking at power plant steam turbines and their photographs off and on since 1956. Haven't seen anything quite like this before. https://www.toshiba-energy.com/en
Someone remarked a power plant steam turbine would have to be about the size of a school bus to make that much electricity but this one is actually about the size of a small SUV.
Look at how thick the shell is and how many massive bolts they are using to hold it together.
Those lugs sticking out it's sides give the impression it could be rather heavy for a 30 megaWatt(e) turbine. Could be as much running temperature as pressure.
Above images from: "Progress Update on the Allam Cycle Commercialization of NET Power and the Net Power Demonstration Facility", GHGT-14, (2018), Melbourne, Australia.
Your author worked for a major engineering company as an electrical instrumentation system drafter and designer on several coal and one nuclear power plants for several years in the late 1950’s. I still visit local power plants near where I live when the opportunity arises.
One of the coal power plants I made electrical connection drawings for in 1957 had electrostatic precipitators at the base of its smoke stack to capture coal fly ash. The plant was Ohio Edison’s (now FirstEnergy) W.H. Sammis plant, 75 mW(e) unit 1, located in South East Ohio on the Ohio River. It was later shown by the EPA to have produced acid rain in Coastal New York State, some 500 miles away. At the time, I wasn’t surprised since the stacks were at least as tall as the Washington Monument, (555 feet, 5 inches). Like a large forest fire, the stack’s coal exhaust plume would rise to the bottom of the Stratosphere and be carried far to the East by the Jet Stream.
I recently learned the W.H. Sammis plant will be closed permanently on June 1, 2022.
I was also personally involved in the automobile smog emissions struggle of the late 1960s engineering an automobile exhaust hydrocarbon emissions analyzer for Delco-Remy division of General Motors. This, plus what I had learned about coal emissions and the later ozone emissions hole, locked me into being concerned about the issue of energy's impact on the environment.
From that time until retirement I worked for a pharmaceutical company in their engineering division as an industrial electronics consultant.
By the time I retired in 1996, I realized that most of the folks who were concerned about Global Warming (later called “Climate Change”) were, in general, both ignorant of, and hostile to, engineers from the coal electricity world.
Yes, the supercritical carbon dioxide working fluid Allam Engine is a bit of rocket science, and is pushing the limits on several other technology fronts, but in early January 2021 it was announced that the pilot plant in Texas is going to be duplicated in four different countries for training local engineers so a lot of people are putting long term money on tables.
At this time, the Allam Cycle is intended to be used as a Zero-CO2 burner of Fossil Fuels
Today's Typical Electricity Demand
Widespread electric car use would probably push Base Load up into the 5,000 megaWatt region in this diagram.