Carbfix’s new pilot CCS-plant at ON Power’s geothermal plant at Nesjavellir, Iceland is now operational and injection of CO2 and H2S has started at the site. This is a result of significant research and development carried out within the EU Horizon2020 project GECO to further improve the Carbfix technology. The pilot plant may be moved to different locations for other Carbfix pilot projects in the future.
The mission was both to significantly increase CO2 capture efficiency of the Carbfix technology, and to provide the basis for a subsequent permanent CCS installation at Nesjavellir – Iceland’s second largest geothermal plant – to reduce its CO2 emissions as well as its H2S emissions. The plant was designed and constructed in collaboration with Mannvit Consulting Engineers, Verkís Consulting Engineers and Héðinn.
The pilot plant captures all H2S that flows through it and up to 98% of CO2. It has an annual capture capacity of 3,000 tons of CO2 and 1,000 tons of H2S, which represents approximately 20% of the power plants annual emissions. The captured CO2 is injected into the basaltic subsurface at the Nesjavellir injection site where it reacts with the bedrock and forms stable carbonate minerals. A full-scale CCS-plant, based on this pilot, is scheduled to become operational at Nesjavellir by 2030, reducing the plant’s CO2 and H2S footprint to near zero.
“I am incredibly proud of the Carbfix team, our partners at ON Power and our collaborators, for the hard work and dedication that went into this project,” says Nökkvi Andersen, Project Manager. “It was a challenging but rewarding experience, and its success is a testament to great teamwork. This is an important milestone, not only in terms of reducing the CO2 footprint of the Nesjavellir plant but in terms of future application of the Carbfix technology in general.”
“ON Power has decided to make our production emission free by 2030 and we are collaborating with Carbfix to achieve this,” says Berglind Rán Ólafsdóttir, CEO of ON Power. “The collaboration has been excellent, and we are on track to make Hellisheiði the first emission free geothermal power plant in the world by 2025 and Nesjavellir by 2030. We were the first to set this target. Our collaboration demonstrates to the world that it is possible – and that is precisely what is needed.”
The pilot is part of the European Union’s GECO project (Geothermal Emission Control), funded by the EU’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program. Extensive research has furthermore been carried out by Reykjavik Energy, University of Iceland, ISOR, CNRS, STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, University of Edinburgh, University College London, and the University of Salerno to gain further insights into the mineralization process and to develop new monitoring technologies for current and future projects.