Demonstrating innovative carbon capture technology

To scale up carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) to the magnitude needed to meet the Paris Agreement goals, extensive work will be required to develop separation technologies that simultaneously meet high CO2 recovery and purity standards, at lower costs and with low to no emissions.

Through the ViennaGreenCO2 pilot project, Shell and consortium partners have successfully tested an innovative solid sorbent technology at a biomass power plant in Vienna, Austria that meets such demanding conditions.

The ViennaGreenCO2 consortium designed, constructed, and operated a 1 tonne per day pilot CO2 capture plant. The project showed that the solid sorbent technology can separate over 90% of the CO2 from post-combustion flue gases, while yielding a purity of over 95% without any post treatment – and has low to negligible emissions. Furthermore, the CO2 was found to be suitable for greenhouse fertilization.

An economic assessment showed that the separation costs per tonne of CO2 are up to 40% lower compared to liquid amine technology benchmarking as recently performed by the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL)[1] and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)[2].

As a showcase of open innovation, the consortium consisted of partners from across the CCUS value chain, alongside knowledge institutes: Shell Global Solutions, TU Wien and BOKU, Bertsch Energy, M-tec, Wien Energie and potential CO2 off-takers Lk Projekt and LGV Frischgemuese. The pilot project and research resulted in nine PhDs and 20 published papers as well as presentations at the biannual Green House Gas Technology (GHGT) conference.

Now that the ViennaGreenCO2 project has been successfully completed, the pilot plant will be transferred to the Netherlands and re-commissioned to capture CO2 from another industrial site.

In parallel, Shell will continue to work in partnerships to further mature this technology and is planning to develop a demonstration project at a significantly larger scale (100 to 150 tpd CO2). This demonstration project will be the final upscaling step before deployment of the technology at full commercial scale.

Shell’s ambition is to be a net-zero carbon company by 2050. In support of this ambition, and continuing the collaborative approach, the demonstration project will provide the opportunity for parties with similar ambitions to partner in the development of a game changing CO2 capture technology.

[1] Cost and Performance Baseline for Fossil Energy Plant Volume 1: Bituminous Coal and Natural Gas to Electricity. September 24, 2019. NETL-PUB-22638.

[2] NREL 2019 Annual Technology Baseline. Golden, CO: National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

What OGCI member companies are doing to accelerate CCUS

OGCI Climate Investments invests in technologies and projects that capture store or use carbon dioxide in industrial processes and power generation.