CO2 Transport Flow Rig

Overview

If carbon capture and storage is to become practical, high-pressure CO2 must be piped, possibly for several hundred kilometres in many situations.  However, whereas there is extensive experience of piping hydrocarbon fuels, there is little experience of piping CO2 with a wide range of potential contaminants that are likely to be produced from the various possible combustion/gasification applications.  Cranfield’s test facility will allow the use of inhibitors to control corrosion, to extend the database for CO2 containing contaminants for a range of pipeline, injection well bore materials, subsea components and compressor materials for pipeline infrastructure.  Cranfield has also extensive experience in seal materials and inorganic lubricants to identify their durability and operability during pipeline upset conditions.

Applications

Garnering experience on how metals or liners perform with the wide range of trace contaminants that can be expected to be in gases from CCS processes such as gasification, shift reactors, oxy-fuel combustors or gases from amine scrubbing, presents unique potential challenges.  Determination of the chemistries involved will also be of use for determining the materials that are used in injection wells for CO2 storage. The pipeline material life prediction models will be based on the framework models deployed at Cranfield over the past 20 years, based on statistically valid data sets.

System Description

This unique multi-functional dynamic dense phase flow loop facility can be flexible in operating at different conditions (gas, liquid and dense phase) with several integrated components. The key advantage of this facility is that it can hold multiple material coupons with different geometry and size under realistic conditions for extended periods of time. This facility was developed in the E.ON-EPSRC strategic partnership, MATTRAN project to understand materials behavior in CO2 pipeline transport.

Integrated components

This test facility is capable of operating at up to 5 L/min flow rate at dense phase conditions (up to 100 bars and 50°C), and is equipped with pressure sensing equipment and safety release valves to allow this unit to be operated at these extremely high pressures.  This unique facility allows materials testing (metallic and non-metallic) and an examination of the key chemistries associated with the transport step in CCS.

Analytical Capability

A complete range of gaseous components can be added, at precise levels, to the dense phase flow in this unit, and the gas stream can be examined using a complete range of spectroscopic techniques. The test facility is equipped with a number of sensitive monitoring techniques including pH, conductivity, LPR, ECN and weight loss coupons to evaluate the corrosion mechanisms.