Low-Carbon Fuels for Power Generation


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The EPRI-GTI Low Carbon Resources Initiative (LCRI) has nine technical subcommittees.  The Power Generation subcommittee currently has 26 active members representing electric, gas and combined electric & gas utilities as well as two gas turbine Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM).  Studies, testing and demonstration projects utilizing hydrogen and ammonia as alternate low-carbon energy carriers dominates member interests with hydrogen being most significant. Next steps will include scoping specific topics for “no-regret” studies and soliciting inputs for creating a five-year power generation roadmap.  Current position of the power generation company members:


  1. Alternate Energy Carrier (AEC). Applied R&D on H2 and H2 blended with natural gas dominates member interest. Ammonia is also being studied with selected tests underway.


  1. Gas turbines (combined cycle and simple cycle) are of most significant interest with reciprocating engines next; R&D related to use of H2 in these equipment has priority over, for example, in power generation boilers.  Boilers for industrial and commercial steam and CHP are not a current focus.


  1. Studies & Evaluations.  Studies including establishing laboratory data related to combustion phenomena (auto-ignition, flame stability, combustion dynamics, etc.) are being identified as pre-commercial R&D for pure and blended AEC, with reaction kinetics, associated reduced kinetics mechanisms and validation tests to follow; these fundamental experiments and correlations will also specifically address emissions (e.g., oxides of N2). We have determined that these academia-based efforts are a foundational pre-requisite for both AEC fuel standards and combustor designs.


  1. Demonstrations. Tests to demonstrate H2 co-firing and ammonia in simple cycle gas turbines are being considered. Desire to host pilot demonstrations is dependent on specific technologies (e.g., electrolyzers, power-to-gas) as well as upon future identification of demonstrations that would be compatible with member interest and site capabilities.  We have one member that has 30 process steam boilers and is offering to use one of the units to demonstrate the use AEC-natural gas blended fuels.