Each year, Business Roundtable companies invest tens of billions of dollars in research and development on energy and environmental technologies. A new Business Roundtable report which highlights Southern Company, showcases examples of how investments in energy technology is providing benefits to the economy, communities and people around the world.
In the report, Business Roundtable highlights the Transport Integrated Gasification (TRIG™) process which is designed to provide a clean, efficient and reliable method for using low-cost, low-rank coal in electric power generation. Specifically, TRIG™ converts coal into a clean-burning gas that can fuel integrated gasification combined-cycle power plants. In addition, TRIG™ incorporates process enhancements that can increase affordability.
About the TRIG™ Technology
- TRIG™ has been developed over the last two decades at the Power Systems Development Facility — now the National Carbon Capture Center — in Alabama.
- The nation’s first commercial-scale deployment of TRIG™ is under development at the Kemper County energy facility in Mississippi.
- During the gasification process, coal is fed into the gasifier and heated to a high temperature and high pressure. The combination of heat and pressure turns the coal into gas, facilitating removal of hydrogen sulfide and carbon dioxide and creating a clean-burning gas fuel.
- TRIG™ improves upon the traditional gasification process by using air, rather than pure oxygen, to gasify the coal and by allowing a high rate of coal-to-gas conversion.
Benefits of the TRIG™ Technology
- Improved environmental performance: TRIG™ is designed to support coal-based generation with resulting carbon dioxide emissions equivalent to a similarly sized natural gas plant.
- Increased efficiency: TRIG™ is designed to produce more power with lower operation and maintenance costs than is currently possible with other gasification technologies.
- Preserving a global fuel resource: More than half the world’s coal reserves consist of lower-grade lignite and subbituminous coal, which TRIG™ was developed to use. As global electricity demand grows, TRIG™ can provide a valuable solution for 21st century coal generation, particularly in the countries of Eastern Europe, China, South Korea, Australia and Indonesia.
For additional information about how Southern Company is utilizing the TRIG™ technology, see the April, 2015 Business Roundtable report, “Inventing The Future; How Technology Is Reshaping the Energy and Environmental Landscape.”