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. Babcock And Wilcox Power Generation Group Breaks Ground On Clean Energy Lab

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by Staff Writers
Barberton OH (SPX) Jul 09, 2008
Babcock and Wilcox Power Generation Group broke ground June 30, 2008, on a new $11.8 million, 7,500-square-foot facility for the study of carbon dioxide (CO2) capture technology at its Research Center in Barberton.

The new pilot plant will allow B and W PGG additional research capabilities into Regenerable Solvent Absorption Technology (RSAT) as a method for capturing CO2 emissions.

It will complement B and W PGG's research into the development of oxy-coal combustion technology -- an alternative solution for reducing CO2 emissions from coal-fired power plants.

RSAT is a promising post-combustion scrubbing process that involves using a liquid solvent in an absorber vessel to remove CO2 from a plant's flue gas stream. CO2 is absorbed and chemically reacted by the solvent, and the clean gas is exhausted.

The liquid solvent, rich with captured CO2, is then pumped into a regenerator where it is heated and the absorbed CO2 is removed. The CO2 can then be prepared for long-term storage or other uses, such as enhanced oil recovery, while the liquid solvent is recycled in the process.

B and W PGG's RSAT pilot plant will be installed in a new building adjacent to the existing Small Boiler Simulator at the B and W Research Center in Barberton. Construction will continue throughout 2008, with plans for the facility to be operational during the first quarter of 2009.

"B and W PGG is actively working to develop the next generation of scrubbers for the capture and storage of CO2 emissions from coal-fired power plants," said B and W PGG Vice President and Chief Technology Officer Don Langley.

"This new RSAT facility represents a substantial investment and demonstrates our company's commitment to developing commercially viable and environmentally conscious options for CO2 capture."

The groundbreaking ceremony was attended by U.S. Sen. George Voinovich, U.S. Rep. Betty Sutton, Barberton Mayor Bob Genet and other invited guests and dignitaries.

Sen. Voinovich praised B and W PGG for its carbon-capture research and development efforts.

"The research and innovation that will take place here to explore Regenerable Solvent Absorption Technology to capture carbon is a vitally important step forward in our nation's commitment to crafting a comprehensive solution to climate change," Sen. Voinovich said.

"Climate change requires a long-term solution with a strategy that is fully capable of accommodating the time necessary to get the technology in place that will ensure coal's continued viability."

Congresswoman Sutton recalled her Barberton roots - she is a Barberton native and her father worked for B and W - and praised B and W for its commitment to the region.

"B and W is a great example that there are opportunities and a bright future for engineering, researching, and manufacturing jobs here in Ohio," Rep. Sutton said.

"We must continue to make investments in our educational system, including vocational and technical schools, to strengthen our workforce. Together, B and W and Ohio will continue to lead our nation and the world in the development of green jobs and technology."

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