Project Focuses on Curbing Sulfur Oxides, Nitrogen and Mercury Emissions
LAS VEGAS, Oct. 4 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- An advanced process for
removing pollutants from coal-fired power plant emissions -- Regenerative
Activated Coke Technology (ReACT) -- is scheduled to be tested at the Valmy
Generating Station in northern Nevada starting in the spring of 2007. The
demonstration project -- which is subject to pending regulatory approvals --
is the result of an agreement announced by Sierra Pacific Resources
(NYSE: SRP), Tokyo-based J-POWER EnTech Inc., and the Electric Power Research
Institute (EPRI), the California-based R&D think tank.
The ReACT process is a multi-pollutant control technology, which has been
shown to reduce emissions significantly at coal-fired power plants. It has
been used commercially in Japan and achieved impressive results. The purpose
of the demonstration project at Valmy is to verify ReACT's performance with
U.S. coals. Such verification is important before the domestic electric power
industry commits to commercial projects utilizing ReACT.
The joint demonstration project is one of several expected to be conducted
in the United States in which EPRI manages the testing contractor to provide
an independent, third-party assessment of the technology.
"We commend Sierra Pacific Resources and its partners, J-POWER and EPRI,
for undertaking this program to demonstrate the potential of the ReACT process
to reduce air pollution from coal-fired power plants," said Michael Elges,
chief of the Bureau of Air Pollution Control, Nevada Division of Environmental
Protection. "If this demonstration is successful, it could open the door to a
promising new technology for controlling pollutant emissions."
The ReACT process can reduce emissions of sulfur oxides (SO2 and SO3) by
more than 98 percent, nitrogen oxides (NOx) by up to 80 percent and mercury
emissions by more than 90 percent.
At the heart of the process is an adsorber filled with activated coke that
functions as a magnet in trapping pollutants. The activated coke is removed
slowly from the bottom of the adsorber, regenerated and then recycled into the
adsorber again resulting in the continuous capture of pollutants.
Recent U.S. power industry engineering studies concluded that the ReACT
technology has the potential to reduce emissions from the combustion of
low- to medium-sulfur coals at lower costs than competing technologies. Also,
ReACT is a dry process and requires only about 1 percent of the water required
for conventional wet flue gas desulfurization. Finally, it does not produce
wastes that need to be disposed.
The ReACT process has been applied commercially at about 15 large-scale
power and industrial plants operating in Japan and Germany. Among the
Japanese plants using the process are Isogo Unit No. 1, a 600-megawatt,
state-of-the-art pulverized coal power station near Tokyo and Takehara Unit
No. 2, a 350-megawatt fluidized bed boiler unit in Takehara, Japan, both owned
and operated by J-POWER Corp.
Valmy is a 500-megawatt generating plant that is owned jointly by Sierra
Pacific Power Company, a Sierra Pacific Resources' subsidiary that serves most
of the electric customers in northern Nevada, and Idaho Power Company. Sierra
Pacific Power operates the plant. Also participating in the project is
another Sierra Pacific Resources subsidiary, Nevada Power Company, which
provides electricity to Las Vegas and other parts of southern Nevada.
Valmy consists of two 250-megawatt, pulverized coal generating units
located 40 miles east of Winnemucca, Nevada. Generating Units 1 and 2 at
Valmy were completed in 1981 and 1985, respectively.
The Valmy ReACT demonstration project will utilize "slip-stream" equipment
(2.5 MW equivalent) that will divert a small amount of flue gas from the Valmy
Unit No. 1, approximately 1% of the total, to the ReACT pilot and measure the
quantities of sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides and other pollutants removed.
Bituminous and sub-bituminous coals will be tested during the six-month
program, which will be managed by EPRI. Test results will be directly
applicable to full-scale installations because the ReACT module used -- the
activated coke cartridge -- is identical to what's used in a commercial
installation, although on a smaller scale.
Headquartered in Nevada, Sierra Pacific Resources is a holding company
whose principal subsidiaries are Nevada Power Company, the electric utility
for most of southern Nevada, and Sierra Pacific Power Company, the electric
utility for most of northern Nevada and the Lake Tahoe area of California.
Sierra Pacific Power Company also distributes natural gas in the Reno-Sparks
area of northern Nevada. Other subsidiaries include the Tuscarora Gas
Pipeline Company, which owns 50 percent interest in an interstate natural gas
J-POWER EnTech, Inc., is a wholly-owned subsidiary of J-POWER (Electric
Power Development Co., Ltd.) of Japan, one of the world's largest wholesale
electric power generators. J-POWER, a public company listed on the Tokyo
Stock Exchange, has 16,380 megawatts of installed capacity (approximately half
coal-fired and the other half hydroelectric) and more than 2,400 kilometers of
high voltage transmission lines in Japan and its annual revenues exceed
$5 billion. J-POWER EnTech, Inc., was established in 2005 to market ReACT
The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), with major locations in Palo
Alto, California, and Charlotte, North Carolina, was established in 1973 as an
independent, nonprofit center for public interest energy and environmental
research. EPRI brings together member organizations, the Institute's
scientists and engineers, and other leading experts to work collaboratively on
solutions to the challenges of electric power. These solutions span nearly
every area of power generation, delivery, and use, including health, safety,
and environment. EPRI's members represent over 90% of the electricity
generated in the United States. International participation represents nearly
15% of EPRI's total R&D program.
SOURCE Sierra Pacific Resources
Media, Karl Walquist of Sierra Pacific Resources, +1-775-834-3891,
email@example.com; or Stratos Tavoulareas of J-POWER EnTech, +1-703-506-3948,
firstname.lastname@example.org; or George Offen, +1-650-855-8942,
email@example.com, or Chuck Dene, +1-650-855-2425, firstname.lastname@example.org, both of EPRI
-0- Oct/04/2006 17:15 GMT
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