United States Patent Application: 0130152596

This will be an overlong, rambling dispatch; and, we apologize for that. But, the point we hope and intend to make herein is one we have often repeated; one which, the sooner it's recognized and accepted, will make our lives in US Coal Country, in the entire United States of America, indeed, in the entire world, better. 

Carbon Dioxide, as it arises in only a small way, relative to natural sources of emission, such as the Earth's inexorable processes of planetary volcanism, from our essential use of Coal in the generation of abundant, reliable and truly economical electric power, is a precious, even a vital, resource.

 

 

Up front: It is now saving us from environmental disaster; and, to a point, the more we have of it in our atmosphere, the more comfortable, the healthier, and the safer, we all will be.  

If you have followed our reports at all, concerning especially the technologies that have been developed whereby Carbon Dioxide can be, and is now being, harvested from the environment or from industrial processes and then be converted into any and all sorts of needed liquid and gaseous hydrocarbon fuels and plastics manufacturing raw materials, you will know that to be true in terms of Carbon Dioxide's immense potential value as a raw material resource for industry.

We'll get back to addressing that momentarily. But, new discoveries made by our National Aeronautics and Space Administration

(- - who, as seen for one example in our report of:

NASA 2014 CO2 to Methane | Research & Development | News; concerning: "United States Patent 8,710,106 - Sabatier Process and Apparatus for Controlling Exothermic Reaction; 2014; Abstract: A Sabatier process involving contacting carbon dioxide and hydrogen ... so as to produce a product stream comprising water and methane. ... An apparatus for controlling temperature in an exothermic reaction, such as the Sabatier reaction, is disclosed. Government Interests: This invention was made with support from the U.S. government under U.S. Contract No. NNX10CF25P sponsored by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The U.S. Government holds certain rights in this invention";

have publicly disclosed the fact that Carbon Dioxide is a raw material resource of potentially immense value, since, in a very energy-efficient process, it can be converted into what would be an essentially inexhaustible supply of substitute natural gas Methane - -)

have just demonstrated that Carbon Dioxide in our atmosphere actually saves us from increasing global temperatures; it actually keeps the planet cool in the face of fluctuations in the amount of solar energy emitted by the Sun. And, in fact, the CO2 in our atmosphere recently saved us from a solar event environmental catastrophe.

First, though, almost as an aside, we'll let a former NASA astronaut and an expert associate of his explain how increasing CO2 is helping to minimize world hunger:

Harrison H. Schmitt and William Happer: In Defense of Carbon Dioxide - WSJ.com; "'Harrison H. Schmitt and William Happer: In Defense of Carbon Dioxide'; Wall Street Journal; May 8, 2013; The demonized chemical compound is a boon to plant life and has little correlation with global temperature. Of all of the world's chemical compounds, none has a worse reputation than carbon dioxide. Thanks to the single-minded demonization of this natural and essential atmospheric gas by advocates of government control of energy production, the conventional wisdom about carbon dioxide is that it is a dangerous pollutant. That's simply not the case. Contrary to what some would have us believe, increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere will benefit the increasing population on the planet by increasing agricultural productivity. The cessation of observed global warming for the past decade or so has shown how exaggerated NASA's and most other computer predictions of human-caused warming have been - - and how little correlation warming has with concentrations of atmospheric carbon dioxide. As many scientists have pointed out, variations in global temperature correlate much better with solar activity and with complicated cycles of the oceans and atmosphere. There isn't the slightest evidence that more carbon dioxide has caused more extreme weather. The current levels of carbon dioxide in the earth's atmosphere, approaching 400 parts per million, are low by the standards of geological and plant evolutionary history. Levels were 3,000 ppm, or more, until the Paleogene period (beginning about 65 million years ago). For most plants, and for the animals and humans that use them, more carbon dioxide, far from being a "pollutant" in need of reduction, would be a benefit. This is already widely recognized by operators of commercial greenhouses, who artificially increase the carbon dioxide levels to 1,000 ppm or more to improve the growth and quality of their plants. Using energy from sunlight - - together with the catalytic action of an ancient enzyme called rubisco, the most abundant protein on earth - - plants convert carbon dioxide from the air into carbohydrates and other useful molecules. Rubisco catalyzes the attachment of a carbon-dioxide molecule to another five-carbon molecule to make two three-carbon molecules, which are subsequently converted into carbohydrates. (Since the useful product from the carbon dioxide capture consists of three-carbon molecules, plants that use this simple process are called C3 plants.) C3 plants, such as wheat, rice, soybeans, cotton and many forage crops, evolved when there was much more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than today. So these agricultural staples are actually undernourished in carbon dioxide relative to their original design.

At the current low levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide, rubisco in C3 plants can be fooled into substituting oxygen molecules for carbon-dioxide molecules. But this substitution reduces the efficiency of photosynthesis, especially at high temperatures. To get around the problem, a small number of plants have evolved a way to enrich the carbon-dioxide concentration around the rubisco enzyme, and to suppress the oxygen concentration. Called C4 plants because they utilize a molecule with four carbons, plants that use this evolutionary trick include sugar cane, corn and other tropical plants. Although C4 plants evolved to cope with low levels of carbon dioxide, the workaround comes at a price, since it takes additional chemical energy. With high levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, C4 plants are not as productive as C3 plants, which do not have the overhead costs of the carbon-dioxide enrichment system. That's hardly all that goes into making the case for the benefits of carbon dioxide. Right now, at our current low levels of carbon dioxide, plants are paying a heavy price in water usage. Whether plants are C3 or C4, the way they get carbon dioxide from the air is the same: The plant leaves have little holes, or stomata, through which carbon dioxide molecules can diffuse into the moist interior for use in the plant's photosynthetic cycles. The density of water molecules within the leaf is typically 60 times greater than the density of carbon dioxide in the air, and the diffusion rate of the water molecule is greater than that of the carbon-dioxide molecule. So depending on the relative humidity and temperature, 100 or more water molecules diffuse out of the leaf for every molecule of carbon dioxide that diffuses in. And not every carbon-dioxide molecule that diffuses into a leaf gets incorporated into a carbohydrate. As a result, plants require many hundreds of grams of water to produce one gram of plant biomass, largely carbohydrate. Driven by the need to conserve water, plants produce fewer stomata openings in their leaves when there is more carbon dioxide in the air. This decreases the amount of water that the plant is forced to transpire and allows the plant to withstand dry conditions better.

Crop yields in recent dry years were less affected by drought than crops of the dust-bowl droughts of the 1930s, when there was less carbon dioxide. Nowadays, in an age of rising population and scarcities of food and water in some regions, it's a wonder that humanitarians aren't clamoring for more atmospheric carbon dioxide. Instead, some are denouncing it. We know that carbon dioxide has been a much larger fraction of the earth's atmosphere than it is today, and the geological record shows that life flourished on land and in the oceans during those times. The incredible list of supposed horrors that increasing carbon dioxide will bring the world is pure belief disguised as science.

Mr. Schmitt, an adjunct professor of engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, was an Apollo 17 astronaut and a former U.S. senator from New Mexico. Mr. Happer is a professor of physics at Princeton University and a former director of the office of energy research at the U.S. Department of Energy."

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And, actually, aside from it's potential to help us stave off global hunger and the specter of slow starvation, by both nourishing and protecting the world's plant life to an extent not really envisioned by the common, dry explanations of botanical photosynthesis, Carbon Dioxide in our atmosphere also protects and defends us directly from events so extraordinary they have the potential to devastate us directly and instantly.

As it did just a few years ago, as explained by NASA via:

Solar Storm Dumps Gigawatts into Earth's Upper Atmosphere - NASA Science; "'Solar Storm Dumps Gigawatts into Earth's Upper Atmosphere'; March 22, 2012; A recent flurry of eruptions on the sun did more than spark pretty auroras around the poles.  NASA-funded researchers say the solar storms of March 8th through 10th dumped enough energy in Earth’s upper atmosphere to power every residence in New York City for two years.

'This was the biggest dose of heat we’ve received from a solar storm since 2005,' says Martin Mlynczak of NASA Langley Research Center.  'It was a big event, and shows how solar activity can directly affect our planet.'

Mlynczak is the associate principal investigator for the SABER instrument onboard NASA’s TIMED satellite.  SABER monitors infrared emissions from Earth’s upper atmosphere, in particular from carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitric oxide (NO), two substances that play a key role in the energy balance of air hundreds of km above our planet’s surface.

"Carbon dioxide and nitric oxide are natural thermostats,” explains James Russell of Hampton University, SABER’s principal investigator.  “When the upper atmosphere (or ‘thermosphere’) heats up, these molecules try as hard as they can to shed that heat back into space."

That’s what happened on March 8th when a coronal mass ejection (CME) propelled in our direction by an X5-class solar flare hit Earth’s magnetic field.  (On the “Richter Scale of Solar Flares,” X-class flares are the most powerful kind.)  Energetic particles rained down on the upper atmosphere, depositing their energy where they hit.  The action produced spectacular auroras around the poles and significant upper atmospheric heating all around the globe.

"The thermosphere lit up like a Christmas tree,” says Russell.  “It began to glow intensely at infrared wavelengths as the thermostat effect kicked in."

For the three day period, March 8th through 10th, the thermosphere absorbed 26 billion kWh of energy.  Infrared radiation from CO2 and NO, the two most efficient coolants in the thermosphere, re-radiated 95% of that total back into space.

In human terms, this is a lot of energy.  According to the New York City mayor’s office, an average NY household consumes just under 4700 kWh annually. This means the geomagnetic storm dumped enough energy into the atmosphere to power every home in the Big Apple for two years".

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So, Carbon Dioxide in our upper atmosphere, over the course of several days in March of 2012, acted as our cosmic "shield", deflecting a potentially disastrous storm of electromagnetic and thermal energy back into outer space, before it could do much of any harm here, on Earth's surface.

However, there is more to it. Although CO2 acts as our shield, deflecting, as above, enough thermal energy that struck us all at once to light New York City "for two years"; it is also supposed to act as our blanket, according to the global warming fear mongers, keeping thermal energy in our environment. It is not, apparently, living up to that hype.

In a footnote appended to the article, NASA explains:

"No one on Earth’s surface would have felt this impulse of heat.  Mlynczak puts it into perspective: 'Heat radiated by the solid body of the Earth is very large compared to the amount of heat being exchanged in the upper atmosphere. The daily average infrared radiation from the entire planet is ... enough to power NYC for 200,000 years.”

So, even though Carbon Dioxide is pretty good at buffering the effects of sudden radiation bursts that might rain down on us, as explained above by NASA, as former US Senator and NASA astronaut Harrison Schmitt explained earlier maybe it doesn't really hold in that much heat. And, maybe, it acts more like a shock absorber than a shield or a blanket. Either way, it is also, as seen in our report of:

West Virginia Coal Association | Germany Awarded 2011 CO2 Recycling US Patent | Research & Development; concerning: "United States Patent 7,989,507 - Production of Fuel ... Utilizing Waste Carbon Dioxide; 2011; Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft (AG), Munich, Germany: Abstract: The present invention is directed to a method for utilizing CO2 waste comprising recovering carbon dioxide from an industrial process that produces a waste stream comprising carbon dioxide ... . The method further includes producing hydrogen using a renewable energy resource and producing a hydrocarbon material utilizing the produced hydrogen and the recovered carbon dioxide. ... The inventors of the present invention have developed a novel method and system for utilizing waste carbon dioxide for the production of useful fuel materials. In one aspect of the present invention, the present invention provides a novel, efficient, and economical method and system for producing useful fuel materials, i.e. methane, methanol, carbon monoxide, syngas, gasoline products, and/or other fuel materials, from carbon dioxide recovered from carbon dioxide-containing waste streams via hydrogen produced by renewable energy resources";

a valuable, maybe even a precious, raw material resource from which we can synthesize such interesting products as "methane, methanol, ... gasoline products, and/or other fuel materials".

Since the link to the US Government record of that patent we included in the report no longer functions as it should, here's a back-up:

Production of fuel materials utilizing waste carbon dioxide and hydrogen from renewable resources - Siemens Aktiengesellschaft .

Note, in our above excerpts from Siemens AG's "US Patent 7,989,507 - Production of Fuel ... Utilizing Waste Carbon Dioxide", that "recovering carbon dioxide from an industrial process that produces a waste stream comprising carbon dioxide" is the preferred way, in Siemens' way of thinking, of getting CO2 with which to synthesize "methane, methanol (and) gasoline".

And, if we're at all interested in synthesizing a little "methane, methanol (and) gasoline" out of Carbon Dioxide in United States Coal Country, here, as excerpted from the initial link in this dispatch, is how Siemens proposes we go about collecting it, with a reduced parasitic drain of electricity from our Coal-fired power plants:

"United States Patent Application 20130152596 - Fossil Fuel-Fired Power Station Having a Removal Apparatus for Carbon Dioxide and Process for Separating Carbon Dioxide from an Offgas from a Fossil Fuel-Fired Power Station 

FOSSIL FUEL-FIRED POWER STATION HAVING A REMOVAL APPARATUS FOR CARBON DIOXIDE AND PROCESS FOR SEPARATING CARBON DIOXIDE FROM A

Date: June 20, 2013

Inventors: Hermann Kremer and Nicolas Vortmeyer, Germany

Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft (AG), Munich

Abstract: A fossil fuel-fired power station having a removal apparatus for carbon dioxide which is located downstream of a combustion facility and through which an offgas containing carbon dioxide may flow is provided. The removal apparatus comprises an absorption unit and a desorption unit. The desorption unit is connected to a renewable energy source.

Claims: A fossil-fired power plant, comprising: a separation device for carbon dioxide which follows a combustion device and through which a carbon dioxide-containing exhaust gas is capable of flowing, the separation device, comprising: an absorption unit, and a desorption unit; a renewable energy source; and a heat accumulator, wherein the desorption unit is connected to the renewable energy source, wherein the heat accumulator is connected between the desorption unit and the renewable energy source, wherein a plurality of absorbent accumulators are connected into a scrubbing agent circuit of the separation device for carbon dioxide, and wherein the desorption unit is connected to a heat exchanger which is connected to the steam turbine unit of the fossil-fired power plant, so that heat energy from the steam turbine unit is administered by means of regulating devices to the desorption unit in the event of an insufficient supply of heat energy by the renewable energy source.

The fossil-fired power plant ... wherein the renewable energy source is a solar thermal plant and comprises a solar array.

The fossil-fired power plant ... wherein the renewable energy source is a geothermal plant.

(A number of non-fossil fuel energy sources can be employed. Not a lot of heat, really, is needed. And, if stuff like "solar thermal" sounds unrealistic in the often-cloudy heart of West Virginia and other parts of United States Coal Country, it isn't in other places where the value of Coal-based electric power is appreciated, such as: 

Polk Power Station - Tampa Electric; "Polk Power Station occupies 4,300 acres on State Road 37 in Polk County, Florida. It is located approximately 40 miles southeast of Tampa. A state-of-the-art integrated coal gasification combined-cycle (IGCC) power plant, Tampa Electric's Polk Power Station produces enough electricity to serve 75,000 homes. ... The 260-megawatt IGCC facility began commercial operation in the fall of 1996 (and) is among the nation's cleanest, most efficient and most economical power generation units. The plant is a first-of-its-kind combination of two leading technologies. The first technology is called "coal gasification," which uses coal to create a clean-burning gas. The second technology is called "combined-cycle," which is the most efficient method of producing electricity commercially available today. The plant combines coal with oxygen in the gasifier to produce the gaseous fuel. After processing, the clean coal gas is used in the combustion turbine to produce electricity. Combined-cycle technology increases efficiency because it reuses exhaust heat to produce more electricity".

But, if supplemental "geothermal" energy sounds just as unrealistic for Coal Country, consider, that, as seen in one report:

Another Energy Bonanza for Coal Country | Research & Development | News; concerning, in part, the Beckley, WV, Register-Harold, article: "West Virginia Looks Good for Geothermal Energy Production; 2010; Scientists at Southern Methodist University’s Geothermal Laboratory discovered that the temperature of the Earth beneath certain areas of the state is much higher than previous estimates. The hottest areas - below Tucker, Randolph, Pocahontas, and Greenbrier counties - show potential for use as a commercial baseload of geothermal energy production";

there are potentials about which not too many people have thought us worthy of being told.) 

The fossil-fired power plant ... wherein the renewable energy source is a biogas and/or biomass combustion plant.

(The above immediately above claim sounds, honestly, ridiculous to us. We won't delve into the details here, but, it is rather easily demonstrable that the use of "biogas and/or biomass combustion" as an energy source is one of the most incredibly, overall, when all the necessary processes of planting, harvesting and etc., are taken into account, energy-wasting and CO2-producing schemes imaginable. It actually makes Coal-fired power generation look "green" by comparison.)

A method for separating carbon dioxide from an exhaust gas of a fossil-fired power plant, comprising: providing an absorption process and a desorption process, in which the heat energy required for the desorption process is provided by means of renewable energies; storing intermediately the renewably generated heat energy before being provided in the desorption process; and compensating a complete or partial undersupply of renewable heat energy to the desorption process by means of a regulating process in which the undersupply is made up by steam from a steam turbine process of the fossil-fired power plant.

The method ... wherein the heat energy for the desorption process is generated solar-thermally (or) wherein the heat energy for the desorption process is generated geothermally. 

Description: Fossil-fired power plant having a separation device for carbon dioxide and method for separating carbon dioxide from an exhaust gas of a fossil-fired power plant

The invention relates to a fossil-fired power plant having a combustion device and a separation device for carbon dioxide, in particular a separation device for carbon dioxide which is composed of an absorption unit and of a desorption unit. The invention relates, moreover, to a method for separating carbon dioxide from an exhaust gas of a fossil-fired power plant.

In fossil-fired power plants, a series of methods for separating carbon dioxide from the exhaust gas of the power plant are currently being developed and tested. In this case, scrubbing methods are employed, in which carbon dioxide is separated from the exhaust gas by chemical or physical absorption prior to combustion (precombustion) or after combustion (post combustion). In the post-combustion method, carbon dioxide is absorbed in absorption columns by a scrubbing agent which is regenerated again in a desorption column following the absorption column, thereby releasing carbon dioxide. The regenerated scrubbing agent is subsequently conducted from the desorption column via corresponding countercurrent heat exchangers back to the absorption column again and is thus circulated. For the desorption process, a large quantity of heat energy is required for regenerating the scrubbing agent and is supplied to the desorption column via sump evaporators and via heat exchangers in side vents of the desorption column.

The main problem in the existing methods for separating carbon dioxide from an exhaust gas is, in particular, the very high energy outlay which is required in the form of heating energy for desorption. No useful improvements have hitherto been found in this regard in the prior art which sufficiently reduce the energy outlay of a separation device for separating carbon dioxide which is integrated into a power station process.

The necessary heat energy has hitherto been extracted in the form of heating steam from the power station process. In fossil power station processes, at the present time a large part of the low-pressure steam of the steam turbine, usually between 30 and 70%, is used for regenerating the scrubbing agent, thereby reducing the overall efficiency of the power plant by 4 to 7%. Moreover, if an existing power plant is appropriately retrofitted with a carbon dioxide separation device, this results in considerable conversion work on the steam and water circuits and on the steam turbines and consequently in considerable investment.

The general disadvantage of carbon dioxide separation devices which are known from the prior art is, in particular, the very high energy outlay. Furthermore, the diversion of steam from the power plant entails considerable additional investment and makes it difficult to operate the power plant in the various operating states. A further disadvantage arises particularly in the run-up phase of the power plant. The process steam for regenerating the scrubbing agent can be made available only when the power plant generates sufficient process steam. It therefore takes a longer time to transfer the separation plant into a stable separating operation, and, consequently, more carbon dioxide is discharged, unpurified, into the atmosphere.

An object of the invention is, therefore, to propose a fossil-fired power plant which, in spite of a connected carbon dioxide separation device, achieves high efficiency, and in which, in the various operating states, the separation plant can be transferred more quickly into a stable separating operation, even when sufficient process steam is not yet available. Carbon dioxide emissions are consequently additionally prevented. A further object of the invention is to specify a method for separating carbon dioxide from an exhaust gas of a fossil-fired power plant, which ensures high efficiency, and in which, in the various operating states, the separation plant can be transferred more quickly into a stable separating operation, in order thereby additionally to prevent carbon dioxide emissions.

A fossil-fired power plant having a separation device for carbon dioxide which follows a combustion device and through which a carbon dioxide-containing exhaust gas is capable of flowing, the separation device having an absorption unit and a desorption unit, and, for the provision of desorption energy, the desorption unit being connected to a renewable energy source for an infeed of heat energy, is developed to the effect that a heat accumulator is connected between the desorption unit and the renewable energy source, and one or more absorbent accumulators are integrated into the scrubbing agent circuit of the separation device.

The invention is in this case based on the idea of providing the heat energy required for the separation device via an unconventional renewable energy source instead of via the power plant. This is possible because, in order to regenerate carbon dioxide, only low-temperature heat is required, which can ideally be provided by regenerative energy sources. It is therefore possible to operate the fossil-fired power plant for the generation of current without any appreciable efficiency losses.

In the separate operation of a fossil-fired power plant having a separation device and the provision of the necessary heat energy for regenerating the scrubbing agent via renewable energy sources, a more advantageous carbon dioxide balance is obtained in total. It is in this case advantageous particularly that the power plant can convert a fossil fuel at the highest technical efficiency level without any appreciable efficiency losses. Moreover, the separation plant reaches a stable operating mode more quickly in the various load states.

The heat accumulator is in this case configured in such a way that possible excess heat energy which, for example, occurs throughout the day can be intermediately stored, so that the separation device for carbon dioxide can be supplied with heat energy even when the renewable energy source temporarily cannot partially or completely make any heat energy available. This is the case in solar thermal plants outside the solar radiation time. The heat accumulator thus ensures that the separation device for carbon dioxide can be operated to a considerable extent with constant heat energy.

Accumulator units (storage tanks) can likewise be incorporated into the scrubbing agent circuit for the laden and the regenerated scrubbing agent, in order to react more flexibly to load changes and to bridge (not illustrated here) operating states in which sufficient heat energy for desorption cannot be provided.

The absorbent accumulators are containers which can temporarily store absorbent. Advantageously, these containers are arranged in the absorbent line from the absorption unit to the desorption unit, since absorbent laden as a result can be intermediately stored. Operating states in which sufficient heat energy for desorption is not available can thereby be bridged. 

By virtue of a separation device which is operated with renewable energies and is integrated in a power plant, markedly lower operating costs are to be expected. In this case, the amount of investment in generating the renewable energy is approximately the same as in the provision of process steam via the fossil-fired power plant.

The renewable energy is advantageously provided by a solar thermal plant. The solar thermal plant is in this case preferably composed of a solar array, composed of individual parabolic trough collectors, or else may be configured in the form of a solar tower plant. By means of the solar array, steam is generated which is provided in the form of heat energy to the desorption unit for the regeneration of scrubbing agent.

A geothermal plant may likewise advantageously be used for generating heat energy for the separation device. A geothermal plant can in this case be employed even in regions where there is possibly insufficient solar radiation for a solar thermal plant, although geothermal heat can be obtained from the soil. The advantage of a geothermal plant is also, in particular, the uninterrupted availability of heat. 

In a further preferred refinement, the desorption unit can obtain heat energy from the steam turbine unit of the fossil-fired power plant via a further following or parallel-connected heat exchanger, so that, in the case of an insufficient supply of heat energy by the renewable energy source, heat energy from the steam turbine unit can be administered to the desorption unit. Appropriate regulating devices are provided for controlling the supply of heat. This measure therefore ensures that, even in the case of a complete or partial undersupply of heat energy via the renewable energy source, heat energy in the form of process steam from the power station process can be used for the desorption of carbon dioxide. The operating reliability of the separation device for carbon dioxide is thus increased.

The method for separating carbon dioxide from an exhaust gas of a fossil-fired power plant, composed of an absorption process and of a desorption process, provides the heat energy required for the desorption process at least partially by means of renewable energies, the renewably generated heat energy being intermediately stored before being fed into the desorption process, and a complete or partial undersupply of renewable heat energy to the desorption process being compensated by means of a regulating process in which the undersupply is made up by steam from the steam turbine process of the fossil-fired power plant.

According to the invention, in this case, the energy required for separating carbon dioxide is provided by renewable energies instead of from the fossil-fired power plant. This is possible because heat at a relatively low level is sufficient for regenerating the carbon dioxide solvent. This heat can ideally be provided by regenerative energy sources. As a result, the fossil-fired power plant can be operated and generate current without any appreciable efficiency losses. 

In a further advantageous refinement of the method for separating carbon dioxide, the heat for the desorption process is generated geothermally and is transmitted to a heat exchanger medium. The use of geothermy has the advantage, as compared with solar thermy, that the heat energy is available largely constantly. 

Accumulator units may likewise be incorporated into the scrubbing agent circuit for the laden and the regenerated scrubbing agent, in order to react more flexibly to load changes and to bridge operating states in which sufficient heat energy for desorption cannot be provided. ... For the operating situation where the separation device requires more heat energy than the renewable energy source can provide, an additional heat exchanger in the form of a sump evaporator is provided, via which additional heating steam from the power plant can be introduced into the desorption unit, so that the desorption unit can be operated at an optimal heating point. ... By means of the heat exchanger, exclusive heating of the desorption unit by process steam from the power station process is also possible in a special case.

A regulating device ... is provided for the optimal supply of the desorption unit with heat energy either from the renewable energy source or from the power plant or in combination with one another".

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Again, this Siemens technology, which employs "accumulators" of one sort and another to build up and store available thermal energy extracted in one way or another from both the environment, i.e., as in "geothermal", and excess process heat which might be available from the power plant, serves to at least reduce, if not completely eliminate, the energy drain from the power plant's primary thermal energy circuits.

It reduces, but likely doesn't completely eliminate, the energy cost, to the "Fossil Fuel-Fired Power Station", of capturing a relatively pure stream of Carbon Dioxide from the power plant's exhaust gasses.

Again, though, that extracted Carbon Dioxide can then serve as a valuable raw material, as in Siemens' own process of the above-cited "United States Patent 7,989,507 - Production of Fuel ... Utilizing Waste Carbon Dioxide", wherein CO2 is used and consumed in the synthesis of Gasoline, just as it is in other, similar processes, like that disclosed in our report of: 

USDOE 2012 Coal Power Plant CO2 to Gasoline | Research & Development | News; concerning: "United States Patent 8,226,909 - Systems Including Catalysts in Porous Zeolite Materials Within a Reactor for Use In Synthesizing Hydrocarbons; 2012; Inventors: Harry Rollins, et. al., Idaho; Assignee: Battelle Energy Alliance, LLC, Idaho Falls; (The USDOE's Idaho National Laboratory is operated for the USDOE by their contractor, the above Battelle Energy Alliance, LLC.) Abstract: Catalytic structures include a catalytic material disposed within a zeolite material. The catalytic material may be capable of catalyzing a formation of methanol from carbon monoxide and/or carbon dioxide, and the zeolite material may be capable of catalyzing a formation of hydrocarbon molecules from methanol. Government Interests: This invention was made with government support under Contract No. DE-AC07-05ID14517 awarded by the United States Department of Energy. The government has certain rights in the invention. The present invention relates to catalytic materials, structures, systems, and methods. More particularly, the present invention relates to catalytic structures including zeolite materials, and to systems and methods for synthesizing hydrocarbon molecules from hydrogen and at least one of carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide using such catalytic structures. Carbon dioxide gas (CO2) may be converted into liquid fuels such as, for example, hydrocarbon molecules of between about 5 carbon atoms and about 12 carbon atoms per molecule (e.g., gasoline) through multi-step reactions";

which We the People of the United States of America own.

In sum: We can, as via the process of our subject:

"United States Patent Application 20130152596 - Fossil Fuel-Fired Power Station Having a Removal Apparatus for Carbon Dioxide and Process for Separating Carbon Dioxide from an Offgas from a Fossil Fuel-Fired Power Station";

with a relatively small loss in power generation efficiency, reclaim Carbon Dioxide from the exhaust streams of our Coal-fired electric power plants.

And, we can then use and consume that Carbon Dioxide as the key basic raw material in processes which synthesize, among other things, Gasoline.

Those facts, in large part, have been confirmed by the United States Government and, as herein, at least one major multinational corporation, Siemens, of rather impeccable credentials.

The only questions which would seem to remain, are:

Do we, the United States citizens of United States Coal Country have, first, the awareness to recognize the immense potentials represented by those facts?

And, second:

Do we have the courage to lay hold of those potentials and to make them real - for our own good, for the good of our children and of our fellow citizens, for the future good of the entire United States of America?


West Virginia Coal Association - PO Box 3923 - Charleston, WV 25339 | 304-342-4153 | website developed by brickswithoutstraw