Commercial Scale Know-How
As part of the sponsorship agreement with SaskPower and BHP, the International CCS Knowledge Centre was established to accelerate the global development of CCS technology by both sharing access to the data, information and lessons learned from SaskPower’s Boundary Dam 3 facility and by incorporating the knowledge and experience from CCS projects elsewhere in the world.
Operating since October 2014, SaskPower’s Boundary Dam 3 Carbon Capture Facility overcame technological and mechanical issues to demonstrate that CCS can be deployed on a commercial scale.
The integrated operation includes:
- The Coal Unit Retrofit
- Carbon Capture Facility
- Carbon Capture Test Facility
- Emissions Control Research Facility
- CO2 Storage at Aquistore
Coal Unit Retrofit – Boundary Dam Unit 3
As part of the Boundary Dam CCS Project, SaskPower transformed its aging Unit #3 at Boundary Dam Power Station near Estevan, Saskatchewan into a reliable, long-term producer of up to 115 megawatts (MW) of base-load electricity.
Carbon Capture Facility
The Boundary Dam Carbon Capture Facility is capable of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by up to one million tonnes of carbon dioxide each year - the equivalent to taking 250,000 cars off the road. Brought online in 2014, the Boundary Dam CCS Project is the World's First Post-Combustion Coal-Fired CCS Project integrated with a power station.
Boundary Dam captures:
- 90% CO2.
- 100% SO2.
- 50% of the Nox. As well as various harmful particulate matters.
The captured CO2 is transported by pipeline to nearby oil fields in southern Saskatchewan where it is used for enhanced oil recovery. CO2 not used for enhanced oil recovery is injected in a disposal well and being monitored by the Aquistore Project.
In addition to CO2, the project allowed for the manufacturing other products from the byproducts captured. Sulphur dioxide (SO2) is captured, converted to sulphuric acid and sold for industrial use. Fly ash, a byproduct of coal combustion, is sold for use in ready-mix concrete, pre-cast structures and concrete products.
Carbon Capture Test Facility
The Carbon Capture Test Facility is available to companies to develop and test carbon capture and storage to provide options for the next generation of CCS innovation. Built in partnership with Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, Ltd., the test facility is a high-tech laboratory that uses a small amount of exhaust (flue) gas from the neighboring Shand Power Station and allows researchers to test equipment, chemical innovation or engineering designs in a highly controlled environment.
The test facility is a modular facility, where many individual parts can be isolated, modified and operated to test specific carbon capture technologies. It contains sophisticated measurement tools and a data system which continually records operating conditions at a hundred locations. Companies are able to track how their particular technology performs over time and in response to realistic commercial operating conditions.
Emissions Control Research Facility
The Emissions Control Research Facility (ECRF) has been established at the Poplar River Power Station, located in southern Saskatchewan. The ECRF has been used to evaluate various technologies for controlling emissions (such as mercury) to determine how the process will perform when fully installed at a power station.
The ECRF can also be used to evaluate processes to reduce other emissions. This facility of its kind in Canada and uses a continuous sample of real flue gas, taken from a power station, and is tested. The facility provides a viable option rather than conducting tests in a pilot plant facility with a burner that could simulate a coal-fired boiler.
CO2 Storage - Aquistore
Aquistore Project is the most comprehensive full-scale geological field laboratory for CO2 storage in the world.
With leading edge technology, the Aquistore Project is an independent research and monitoring project demonstrating the safe, reliable and economic advantages of injecting captured CO2.
The Project consists of heavily instrumented injection and observation wells that continuous monitor the impact and migration of injected CO2 in geological storage of 3.4 kilometres deep in a layer of brine-filled sandstone.
Located 2.0 km from Boundary Dam, the Aquistore Project (which is managed by PTRC) takes the buffer CO2 captured from the plant.
By optimizing CO2 storage, the Aquistore Project has the ingenuity to significantly advance clean technology and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.