Callide A - Project Profile

Callide A, Australia

The Callide A Power Station was originally built in 1962, near Biloela in central Queensland, Australia. This new project aims to demonstrate that new processes can be applied to old technology in order to reduce CO2 emissions into the atmosphere, and also aims to test this project for 5 years to prove success so the technology can then be actively marketed to coal-fired power stations worldwide.

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The oxyfuel process involves firing a coal-fired power station with fuel that has been combusted with pure oxygen (and recycled exhaust gases) rather than with air. This produces a concentrated stream of CO2 which can then be compressed enough to reach its supercritical phase, hence making it a liquid, and then can be stored at various sites.

In 2006, the Callide Oxyfuel team completed a two-year micro pilot test so the technology could be applied at a larger scale. The plan is to test this technology at the larger scales for five years at a live, operational power plant so the oxyfuel process (and technology) can be marketed to power stations worldwide. It is hoped that the technology will be commercially available worldwide by 2020.

When Oxyfuel technology is implemented at commercial scale, estimates have been made of oxygen production of around 14,800 tonnes per day, and of CO2 capture of a similar value. Estimates show that the cost of a new build will be around AUD $2.95 million per MWe, and a retrofit build costs will be around AUD $1.55 million per MWe. These estimates have been extrapolated from the Callide A project figures.

At the 30MW Callide A Power Station, the captured CO2 will be transported (by truck) to the North Denison Trough (approximately 300km away from the station). This storage site was chosen in 2009 due to its ideal characteristics a gas field with an impermeable caprock and in a tectonically stable area. The exact location of CO2 injection (to depths of up to 1km) is yet to be decided.

This plant/project has the capability of reducing its CO2 emissions by 90%, and has the means of capturing and storing up to 100,000 tonnes of CO2.