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Energy firms join CO2 research programme

The international energy companies E.ON, ScottishPower and Statkraft have underlined their commitment to meeting the climate challenges by joining SOLVit - a pioneering R&D programme into carbon capture technology, led by Aker Clean Carbon, the Norwegian CO2 technology company. The R&D institute SINTEF and the university NTNU are selected research partners.

“We are very pleased that some of the world’s leading energy companies are joining SOLVit. The backing of these companies will enable us to develop better and cheaper ways to capture CO2,” says Jan Roger Bjerkestrand, chief executive of Aker Clean Carbon.

The SOLVit programme concerns processes that capture CO2 in the flue gas from the process industry and from coal and gas fired power stations.

The programme aims to generate better and more cost-effective processes and solvents to manage CO2 emissions from these facilities.

The programme has a strong focus on all environmental aspects. The energy companies’ presence in the programme will provide
very important input from the perspective of the facility operator and the end user of the technology.

“We have a clear goal to bring the cost of CO2-capture down significantly. The programme aims to half the required energy consumption in our CO2-capture technology,” says Mr Bjerkestrand.

SOLVit was launched in 2008 by Aker Clean Carbon, SINTEF, the independent research organisation and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, NTNU.

The programme runs for eight years and has a financial value of NOK 317 million (£34m).

Each partner has committed financing of up to NOK 15m (£1.6m) to SOLVit.

Aker Clean Carbon is the biggest financier of SOLVit, which also has support from Gassnova, the Norwegian government’s vehicle for CO2-management, and the Norwegian Research Council.

Other energy companies may join the SOLVit programme at a later stage.

The programme also includes building a new laboratory in Trondheim, situated next to SINTEF’s multi-phase laboratory. The lab will be a unique test centre for pilot projects, including a 30 metre tall tower and processing column – identical to the required height in full-scale industrial facilities.

The SOLVit-programme will also involve testing in Aker Clean Carbon’s mobile test unit, part of Aker which has been in operation since 2008. The mobile facility can process parts of emissions from power stations and industrial sites over several months, producing valuable data on the process and technology.

(Press release from Aker Clean Carbon)

More about the SOLVit partners: