The Great Plains gasification plant in Beulah, North Dakota, uses 14 Lurgi gasifiers to produce 152×106 scf/d (4.1×106 Nm3/d) of pipeline-quality gas from lignite. Since start-up in mid-1984, the plant has provided a serious challenge to the reliable operation of the Stretford sulfur recovery system. To address this challenge, over forty options for mitigating sulfur emissions wre evaluated on an economic and technical basis, beginning at the emissions source (the stack) and working back through the plant. Although this study was directed toward providing a timely solution to the sulfur dioxide emissions problem, the status and opportunities for a number of emerging technologies were brought into focus. Specifically, technical challenges of liquid reduction-oxidation chemistries (such as Sulfolin and Stretford), Claus technologies, and the internal handling of coal-derived liquids need to be met for future synfuels facilities.

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