Archive: Coal


IGCC demonstration plant at Nakoso Power Station, Iwaki City, Japan

Integrated gasification combined-cycle (IGCC) power plants are not yet standard designs. Although they use mature coal gasification processes and combustion turbines, disparate technologies and equipment still require custom, laborious interfacing at each site. Every major gas turbine vendor now can point to one or more power-producing IGCC projects based on its prime mover, but none yet offers a "reference" plant that has standardized the interfacing enough to justify confidence in two key metrics: $/kW and availability. With an air-blown demonstration plant based on one of its 130-MW turbines, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries is looking to change the rules of this game.


Global Monitor (September 2007)

Constellation files partial COL / IAEA scrutinizes shaken Japanese nuke / Wave energy of the future? / New GE plant reigns in Spain / Solar house competition heats up / Oxygen-blown IGCC, at micro-scale / Turning corncobs into ethanol / Court blocks gas attack on coal project / New advanced energy initiatives / POWER digest


PRB Tech Notes: AmerenUE Teams with Charah and Home Depot to Market Ash for Concrete Mix

Burning Powder River Basin (PRB) coal can be a curse or a blessing, depending on your attention to the details of plant design and operations. One disadvantage of PRB coal combustion is the abundance of bottom ash and flyash generated as a by-product. Handling and properly disposing of the ash can be challenging and costly. […]


The Coal Pile: Steam Blast Rocks Big Apple

This July, an underground steam pipe near Manhattan’s Grand Central Terminal ruptured and spewed a scalding brown geyser of steam and debris higher than the nearby 77-story Chrysler Building. The blast, which injured 30 people, created a 40-foot crater at street level that swallowed a tow truck. A similar explosion in 1989 killed three people. […]


Mercury Control: Capturing Mercury in Wet Scrubbers: Part II

In Part I of this two-part report ( COAL POWER, July/August 2007, p. 22), we introduced the integrated R&D effort by the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory (DOE/NETL) to improve understanding of the mechanisms of mercury (Hg) capture and retention in flue gas desulfurization (FGD) systems and the fate of Hg in […]


Plant Economics: The Impact of Shortages on FGD Prices

Since ratification of the Clean Air Act (CAA) in 1970, U.S. utilities have made steady efforts to install pollution control equipment to curb power plant stack emissions. The CAA Amendments of 1990 raised concerns at the time about the industry’s ability to install a large number of flue gas desulfurization (FGD) systems, or scrubbers, in […]

The Coal Patrol: Mine Safety Deserves More Than Lip Service

Every step forward in underground U.S. mine safety in the 20th and 21st centuries has been on the backs of mangled and dead coal miners. That grisly observation is unassailable. Following the August tragedy at the Crandall Canyon mine in Utah that killed six miners and three would-be rescuers, the federal Mine Safety and Health […]


Coal Plant O&M: SmartAsh Proves Its Worth

Every day, while driving to his job at PacifiCorp Energy’s Dave Johnston plant near Glenrock, Wyoming, Cole Harris used to wonder as he neared the station how opaque Unit 3’s stack emissions would look. Until a few years ago, Unit 3 (Figure 3) had trouble staying at or below opacity limits set by the state. […]

Speaking of Coal Power: BACT to the Future

This August, Peabody Energy’s 1,600-MW Prairie State Energy Campus project in Illinois won a major federal appeals court decision, removing the last obstacle to groundbreaking. The six-year regulatory review process ended with an unsuccessful Sierra Club challenge to the $2.9 billion project’s air permit. The decision is sure to reverberate across the nation, and I […]


Coal Plant O&M: How Switching to PRB Lowered O&M Costs

Lansing Board of Water & Light (LBW&L), which has generated electricity since 1892 and steam since 1919 in mid-Michigan, primarily serves the city of Lansing’s business district and all state government buildings in the downtown area. But one of the municipal utility’s plants, Moores Park, has an additional and very important steam customer: General Motors’ […]