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Schwarze Pumpe

Brief description:


Country: Germany

Project type: Capture

Scale: Small

Status: Operative

Capital cost: € 120 million

Year of operation 2008
Industry: Coal Power Plant

MW capacity: 30

Capture method: Oxyfuel

Transport of CO2 by: none

Type of storage: Not decided


Schwarze Pumpe

Vattenfall initiated the project in 2001 with a long term research and development project to develop the oxyfuel technology to a commercial application level. By May 2006 Vattenfall could start with the construction of the 30 MW (thermal) lignite oxyfuel pilot plant near its existing 1,600 MW lignite-fired power plant in the industry park “Schwarze Pumpe” near Spremberg in Brandenburg south of Berlin. The investment costs were initially estimated at € 60 million, however according to Vattenfall construction amounted to € 90 million and further € 30 million are being invested in research activities during the project. On 9 September 2008, Vattenfall officially inaugurated the plant and some 45 t CO2 was successfully separated during the first weeks of operation.

The plant produces about 9 metric tonnes of CO2 per hour, which translates into 75,000 metric tonnes of CO2 per year at full load, approximately 0.6% of the volume of the larger Schwarze Pumpe power plant (10 million tonnes CO2 annually), currently at a cost of € 80 – 90 per tonne. Linde AG provided the cryogenic air separation and air processing unit, as well as the CO2 liquefaction plant, the boiler has been developed in cooperation with Alstom. Other components, such as a new web based I&C system SPPA-T3000 and connections to the airs separation unit, the CO2 liquefaction facility and the main power plant as well as the field instrumentation were provided by Siemens. The pilot plant is supported by research undertaken at the University of Cottbus (CEBra project with a 0.5 MW test facility) and the University of Dresden (ADECOS project with a 0.5 MW test facility). In September 2008 Linde Group and Vattenfall Europe Technology Research GmbH further entered into a wide ranging technology partnership with the aim of collaborating on the testing of oxyfuel combustion processes. Linde is supporting Vattenfall with scientific and technical expertise during the first trial phase unit 2011.

Originally, the separated and liquefied CO2 produced by the pilot plant should have been transported by truck to the 350 km distant storage site in Altmark. Public protests in combination with the lacking federal storage legislation has brought the Altmark project to a halt. Vattenfall is investigating alternative storage sites in Brandenburg. In the mean time however, at least some parts of the CO2 are trucked off for use in industrial application.

In May 2011, the first tonnes of CO2 captured at Schwarze Pumpe will be stored geologically in on-shore saline aquiferes. During four weeks, 60 tonnes CO2 per day will be brought by truck to the storage project in Ketzin, CO2MAN, and stored here.

Vattenfalls aims at using the insights gained during the pilot phase for a large demonstration power plant with a 250 to 300 MW electrical capacity at the coal fired power plant Jänschwalde in Brandenburg. This demo project is planned to start up in 2015 - soon enough to be able receive support from the funding scheme NER300. Thereafter, efficiency and economic aspects will be further investigated and finally the plan is to set up a commercial power plant with the capacity of approximately 1000 MW before 2020.


Other Sources and Press Release:

CO2 from Schwarze Pumpe stored at the pilot project in Ketzin (May 2011)

Bridging to the Future: Vattenfall's newsletter on the CO2-free power plant project

Pilot Plant at Schwarze Pumpe information

Schwarze Pumpe delegation visit (October 2008)

BBC guided tour of Schwarze Pumpe (September 2008)

Vattenfall’s CO2-Free Power Plant Project [PDF]

Zero Emission Fossil Fuel Power Plants [PDF] (November 2006)

German Chancellor Merkel launches ground-breaking for Vattenfall’s CO2 free lignite power plant (May 2006)

Vattenfall Europe: Energy Paths - Horizon 2050 [PDF] (March 2006)

IEA GHG Workshop on Oxyfuel Vattenfall's Activities [PDF] (November 2005)

Companies involved