Energy organisations led by the US Department of Energy and including Alstom and ABB are combining to develop and verify a novel hybrid combustion-gasification concept designed to facilitate ultra-clean coal fired power generation. Other project partners include Parsons Energy & Chemical Group, ABB Lummus Global and PEMM Corporation. The DOE, which is partially funding the US$ 4 m project, will oversee the research through its office of fossil energy.

Alstom is to develop the hybrid combustion-gasification process using high temperature chemical and thermal looping technologies at its power plant research complex in Windsor, Connecticut, where pilot-scale process testing is currently underway.

The process is based on the oxidation, reduction, carbonation, and calcination of calcium-based compounds chemically reacting with coal, biomass, or opportunity fuels in two chemical loops and one thermal loop.

Alstom has completed engineering studies and bench-scale tests on the chemical loop process and decided that it has the potential to meet ultra-clean low emissions targets, including CO2 capture, at a cost and efficiency similar to that of current power plants.

The process components can be configured alternately as a combustion-based steam power plant with or without CO2 capture or as a hybrid combustion-gasification process producing syngas, or ultimately, as an

integrated hybrid combustion-gasification process producing hydrogen for gas turbines, fuel cells or other hydrogen based applications while also producing a separate stream of CO2 for use or sequestration.