GTI, Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), and General Electric (GE) are leading a team working to revolutionize future power generation. The transformational supercritical carbon dioxide (sCO2) power cycle technology being designed and constructed in San Antonio, Texas will be cleaner, more compact, and more energy efficient than current electricity generation.
The United States Department of Energy (DOE) Supercritical Transformational Electric Power (STEP) program has awarded $80 million towards a public-private program to demonstrate a fully integrated functional 10 megawatts electrical (MWe) power plant that uses sCO2 instead of steam as the working fluid to run a turbine in a Brayton cycle. The thermodynamic advantages allow the power plant to generate the same amount of electricity from less fuel with smaller equipment, which decreases CO2 emissions and operating costs.
This initiative will integrate and prove compact, modular technologies that can be used across a broad array of applications, efficiently converting heat to electric power and creating clean energy from natural gas, coal, next-generation nuclear, concentrated solar thermal, and industrial waste heat sources.
Joint industry partnerships with U.S., Canadian, and Korean energy companies continue to grow as technical development progresses. It is anticipated that the site will be ready for commissioning in early 2020.