Novel Sensors and Advanced Process Control
Novel Sensors and Advanced Process Control are critical and enabling technologies for advanced near-zero emission power systems. NETL’s Advanced Research Program is leading the effort to develop sensing and control technologies and methods to achieve seamless, integrated and intelligent power systems. Today, the performance of advanced power systems is limited by the lack of sensors and controls capable of withstanding high-temperature and -pressure conditions. Harsh environments are inherent to new systems that aim for high efficiency with low emissions. In addition, these systems are complex, with operational constraints and system integration challenges that push the limits of traditional process controls. As R&D enhances the understanding of these evolving advanced power systems, it is clear that new, robust sensing approaches, including durable materials and highly automated process controls, are needed to optimize their operation and performance.
The Advanced Research Program supports research to develop:
- A suite of high-temperature, harsh environment sensors to measure temperature, pressure, and other process variables.
- Novel sensors to measure synthesis gas (e.g., hydrogen), flue gas constituents (e.g., nitrogen oxides), and trace contaminants (e.g., mercury).
- Advanced process control strategies for near-zero emissions in processes such as gasification and chemical looping.
- Low cost distributed sensing concepts to support enchanced monitoring and control strategies.
NETL’s Advanced Research Program in Sensors and Controls reflects industry needs and works closely with stakeholders and partners to outline issues and emerging trends. NETL has sponsored workshops in 2002, 2006, 2007, 2010, and 2012 to ascertain measurement and control needs, define the state-of-the-art in these technology areas, forecast sensor and control needs for the coming years, and identify R&D priorities to ensure that key technologies will be available to meet the demands of future advanced power systems.
NETL Sensors and Controls research projects and success stories can be viewed at: