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U.S. Department of Energy Selects Technology Project to Receive $1.5M for Near-Zero Water Consumption at Power Plants
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The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy (FE) and NETL have selected one project to receive approximately $1.5 million in federal funding for cost-shared research and development under the second closing of funding opportunity announcement (FOA) DE-FOA-0002001, Crosscutting Research for Coal-Fueled Power Plants.

The selected project will support DOE’s Crosscutting Research Program, which develops technologies that can be applied to a range of fossil energy uses. Specifically, the project selected for this FOA will help ensure that the Nation has a fleet of coal-fired power plants that provide stable power generation with operational flexibility, high efficiency, low emissions, and even lower water demand than now. The technology will minimize operational complexity and cost under cycling operating conditions. It will enhance the tolerance of fossil power generation when water availability is reduced due to droughts or competing needs from agriculture. 

The second closing focused on one area of interest (AOI):

AOI 2: Coal Power Plant Cooling Technology

Subtopic 2B: Advanced Dry Cooling

Improvement of Coal Power Plant Dry Cooling Technology through Application of Coal Thermal Energy Storage — University of North Carolina at Charlotte (Charlotte, NC) will develop, design, and evaluate a robust and cost-effective system for improving performance of a mechanical draft dry cooling tower or an air-cooled condenser (ACC) for coal power plant applications, using a pervious concrete with embedded, encapsulated phase-change material concept. The system is based on “cold energy” storage, which involves storing low-temperature heat during the night when the temperature of the ambient air is low (~15oC) and using it to pre-cool the air entering a dry cooling tower/ACC during the hot (~40oC) period of the day to improve cooling performance and reduce condenser back pressure.

DOE Funding: $1,453,179; Non-DOE Funding: $363,484; Total Value: $1,816,663

The National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) will manage the selected project.

The Office of Fossil Energy funds research and development projects to reduce the risk and cost of advanced fossil energy technologies and further the sustainable use of the Nation’s fossil resources. To learn more about the programs within the Office of Fossil Energy, visit the Office of Fossil Energy website or sign up for FE news announcements. More information about the National Energy Technology Laboratory is available on the NETL website.