It’s been about a year since SaskPower announced that Shell Cansolv would be taking occupancy of the carbon capture test facility at the Shand Power Station, and Cansolv has been carrying out tests since that time.
Joel Cherry, who is a consultant for media relations and issues management with SaskPower, said Shell Cansolv continues to test out amine degradation issues facing CCS technology at the test facility.
“In 2018, the program was able to reproduce results from the CCS facility at BD3 (Unit 3 at the Boundary Dam Power Station),” said Cheery. “We have a baseline established for further research.”
SaskPower is going to build on that baseline in 2019, and continue testing to explore approaches to reducing amine degradation.
Amine is the chemical used to remove carbon dioxide and sulfur dioxide from the emissions generated through coal-fired generation.
“The way I’ve heard it described is it’s kind of like changing the oil in a car. Amine can only be used for so long before it needs to be replaced. So when we go through the process of stripping the carbon dioxide and the sulfur dioxide, it degrades somewhat, and what was happening was it was degrading more quickly than what we expected.”
It’s something SaskPower is working on, and that Cansolv has been working on for the past year.
Cansolv owns the technology that they are using inside the test facility, and they have been investing in it.
SaskPower is not currently soliciting new tenants for the test facility, but if another tenant wants to move in once Cansolv is finished, they would be welcome to it. Cherry said it could be a company that approaches SaskPower to use the facility, or if the Carbon Capture Knowledge Centre refers them.
SaskPower’s test facility utilizes a “plug-and-play” system, meaning the technology that was tested by the former tenant has now been removed and the new equipment and chemistry to be tested by Shell is being added into the facility for testing.
When SaskPower announced last year that Cansolv would be moving in to the test facility, the Crown corporation noted this testing program continues the partnership developed with Shell Cansolv in the operation of the industrial-scale Boundary Dam carbon capture project since 2014.
Shell Cansolv offers leading gas absorption solutions, regenerable sulfur dioxide scrubbing technology and carbon dioxide capture technology.
Five employees split their time between the Shand Power Station and the test facility, and two engineers work exclusively at the test facility as well.
Shell Cansolv could not immediately be reached for comment.