Wilsonville research facility marks technology testing milestone

Since its creation by the Department of Energy in 2009, the National Carbon Capture Center in Shelby County has worked with more than 30 government, university and research organizations from seven countries. [Photo Credit: Billy Brown]

The National Carbon Capture Center, a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)-sponsored research facility at Alabama Power’s Plant Gaston in Wilsonville, recently surpassed 100,000 hours of technology testing.

The milestone marks significant work by the internationally known test facility, which is managed and operated by Southern Company. The center works to accelerate the development of advanced technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from natural-gas and coal power plants.

“It has been an honor to collaborate with DOE, its National Energy Technology Laboratory and our partners at the National Carbon Capture Center to evaluate and demonstrate next-generation carbon capture technologies,” said Southern Company Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Kimberly S. Greene. “I also commend our highly skilled employees, whose commitment to building the future of energy through innovation is at the heart of this achievement.”

Since its creation by DOE’s Office of Fossil Energy in 2009, the National Carbon Capture Center has worked with third-party technology developers, including more than 30 government, industry, university and research organizations from seven countries. The facility offers a pathway to move novel carbon capture technologies out of the laboratory and demonstrate them in the real-world conditions of a power plant.

The National Carbon Capture Center is also active internationally as co-founder and chair of the International Test Center Network, a coalition of facilities focused on accelerating the research, development and deployment of carbon capture, utilization and storage technologies. Under the center’s guidance, testing collaboration and knowledge sharing is ongoing in Australia, Canada, China, the European Union, India, Japan, Korea, the United Arab Emirates and the U.S.

While technology development at the National Carbon Capture Center currently focuses on post-combustion carbon capture technologies for coal-fueled power generation, the facility is expanding Its testing of carbon capture technologies for natural gas power plants.

Republished with permission from the Alabama NewsCenter.