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Title: Life Cycle Modelling of Carbon Dioxide Capture and Geological Storage in Energy Production
Author: Nie, Zhenggang
ISNI:       0000 0004 2680 8681
Awarding Body: Imperial College London
Current Institution: Imperial College London
Date of Award: 2009
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Carbon dioxide (CO2) capture and geological storage (CCS) is recognised as one of themain options in the portfolio of greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation technologies beingdeveloped worldwide. The CO2 capture and storage technologies require significantamounts of energy during their implementation and also change the environmentalprofile of power generation. The holistic perspective offered by Life Cycle Assessment(LCA) enables decision makers to quantify the trade-offs inherent in any change to thepower production systems and helps to ensure that a reduction in GHG emissions doesnot result in significant increases in other environmental impacts. Early LCA studies ofpower generation with CCS report a wide range of results, as they focus on specific CO2capture cases only. Furthermore, previous work and commercial LCA software have arigid approach to system boundaries and do not recognise the importance of the level ofdetail that should be included in the Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) data. This research developed a complete LCA framework for the ?cradle-to-grave?assessment of alternative CCS technologies in carbon-containing fuel power generation. A comprehensive and quantitative Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) database, which modelsinputs/outputs of processes at high level of detail, accounts for technical and geographicdifferences, generates LCI data in a consistent and transparent manner was developedand arranged and flexible structure. The developed LCI models were successfully applied to power plants with alternativepost-combustion chemical absorption capture and oxy-fuel combustion capture. Theresults demonstrate that most environmental impacts come from power generation withCCS and the upstream process of coal production at a life-cycle perspective. LCAresults are sensitive to the type of coal used and the CO2 capture options chosen. Moreover, the models developed successfully trace the fate of elements (including tracemetals) of concern throughout the power generation, CO2 capture, transport andinjection chain. Monte Carlo simulation method combined with the LCI models wasapplied to quantify the uncertainty of emissions of concern. A novel analytical framework for the LCA of CO2 storage was also developed andapplied to a saline aquifer storage field case. The potential CO2 leakage rates werequantified and the operational and geological parameters that determine the ratio of CO2leakage total volume of CO2 injected were identified.
Supervisor: Durucan, Sevket ; Korre, Anna Sponsor: Hilary Bauerman Trust
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral