• NET Power CEO confident of commercial prospects of new gas-fired power plant design

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      Patrick Lavery

      Combustion Industry News Editor

Forbes has published an article which gives some interesting updates on the NET Power gas power plant design, which the company says will be carbon neutral and cost competitive with existing power plants. NET Power’s demonstration plant is currently undergoing testing, and there is some understandable secrecy around it, but it is understood that carbon capture is not part of the demonstration. Instead, presumably, the demonstration will focus on proving the Allam process, invented by semi-retired British chemical engineer Rodney Allam, which uses carbon dioxide as its turbine fluid, in a radical new overall plant design. The NET Power project has attracted widespread interest due to its freshness and purported potential for carbon neutrality (with carbon capture). Bill Brown, the CEO of the company, attended a question-and-answer session at the University of Chicago last month and many of the questions centred around the financial viability of the plant. Mr Brown insisted that the technology will be financially sustainable, even without use of carbon dioxide for enhanced oil recovery. He did concede, however, that it would take perhaps 30 plants until such a point was reached, the technology improving with deployment, but with a carbon price, or EOR, the plants could be commercially successful even immediately, he said. There were also questions about the technical feasibility of the plant, but given that Exelon, Toshiba and CB&I are all investors, there appears a good chance the design is indeed technically feasible. Time, of course, will tell, but eyes will be watching NET Power’s development from around the world.