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Advanced Imaging Magazine

Updated: January 12th, 2011 09:49 AM CDT

Searching for Cleaner Fuels

Department of Energy scientists use high-speed imaging as a tool to fight global warming
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By Barry Hochfelder

According to the Roadmap, “Most of today’s coal-fired power generation plants are based on 50-100-year-old technology. As environmental concerns evolved over time old technologies were retrofitted with add-on equipment to accommodate various environmental regulations as opposed to developing new integrated system designs. The basic technology was not developed to be ultra-clean or to accommodate the potential need to minimize greenhouse gas emissions such as CO2.

“Gasification allows for the production of multiple products such as electricity and transportation fuels and allows feedstock flexibility,” Shaffer says. “Hybrid concepts such as combined combustion and gasification or combining power generation components such as fuel cells and combustion turbines can achieve high system efficiencies. The Roadmap allows for the development of a range of technologies to meet the range of applications and constraints anticipated for future U.S. energy systems.”



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