The US Department of Energy has announced $11.5 million in funding for 12 projects as part of Phase 1 of the Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy’s (ARPA-E) Flexible Carbon Capture and Storage (FLECCS) programme. FLECCS project teams will work to develop carbon capture and storage (CCS) processes that better enable technologies, such as natural gas power generators, to be responsive to grid conditions in a high variable renewable energy (VRE) penetration environment.
Lane Genatowski, ARPA-E Director, said: “The FLECCS projects will work to address critical carbon capture and storage needs in our nation’s power systems. The FLECCS programme is intended to enable the next generation of flexible, low-cost, and low-carbon electricity systems, and we are eager to work with these teams to innovate the grid of the future.”
FLECCS project teams are developing CCS retrofits to existing power generators as well as greenfield systems that intake fossil carbon-containing fuel like natural gas or bio-gas and output electricity. FLECCS Phase 1 teams will design, model, and optimise CCS processes that enable flexibility on a high VRE grid. Later in the programme, teams that move to Phase 2 will focus on building components, unit operations, and prototype systems to reduce technical risks and costs.
In FLECCS Phase 2, up to $31 million in additional funding will be available for all teams. At the conclusion of the Phase 1 period, teams will be down-selected based on an engineering design review and the projected economic impact of their Phase 1 projects on a future energy grid. Selected teams will move on to receive additional funding, further develop their technologies, and address Phase 2 challenges.