Concerns about climate change have encouraged significant interest in concepts for ultralow or “zero”-emissions power generation systems. In a concept proposed by Clean Energy Systems, Inc., nitrogen is removed from the combustion air and replaced with steam diluent. In this way, formation of nitrogen oxides is prevented, and the exhaust stream can be separated into concentrated CO2 and water streams. The concentrated CO2 stream could then serve as input to a CO2 sequestration process. In this study, experimental data are reported from a full-scale combustion test using steam as the diluent in oxy-fuel combustion. This combustor represents the “reheat” combustion system in a steam cycle that uses a high and low-pressure steam expansion. The reheat combustor serves to raise the temperature of the low-pressure steam turbine inlet, similar to the reheat stage of a conventional steam power cycle. Unlike a conventional steam cycle, the reheat enthalpy is actually generated by oxy-fuel combustion in the steam flow. This paper reports on the unique design aspects of this combustor, as well as initial emissions and operating performance.

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