National Physical Laboratory

Cutting CO2 emissions

IMPACT (Innovative Materials, Design and Monitoring of Power Plants to Accommodate Carbon Capture), a major carbon abatement project that aims to help carbon intensive industries reduce their CO2 emissions, will call on NPL's expertise in Digital Image Correlation (DIC) and novel miniaturised testing capabilities to develop in-situ monitoring of plants for improved through-life plant monitoring to reduce emissions.

CO2 Clouds

The overall objective of the project is to improve the efficiency of future steel-based coal-fired power plants that will allow for reduced emissions through the development of practical techniques for carbon abatement, which will have immediate impact on CO2 emissions once applied. Techniques developed will be applicable to both new-build plants along with retrofitting on existing plants.

NPL is working with industrial partners to achieve IMPACT's aims by:

  • Characterising the novel steels being developed in the project to improve the high temperature capability of welded thick section high alloy steel components in steam plant (boiler, pipework, turbine).
  • Developing novel advanced in-service monitoring techniques, to enable plant to operate at highest temperatures under challenging design conditions without prejudice to safety: creep strain monitoring to warn against plant failure risk and whole-life plant condition monitoring.
  • Contributing to an improved understanding, monitoring and control of performance of welded components to maximise efficiency while avoiding premature weld Type IV cracking as found in current high alloy steel plant.

Specific NPL activity will involve the development and validation of full field strain monitoring techniques based on high resolution Digital Image Correlation (DIC) for the in-situ monitoring of power plant components, and novel miniaturised testing to rapidly characterise, through a range of test types, some of the new steels being developed in the project.

NPL will be developing robust solutions for the project partners using DIC techniques that will allow for the direct in-situ monitoring of power plant components. Using DIC in such an environment is a significant challenge due to the potential changes in surface conditions due to oxidation, temperature effects, component geometry issues, and the difficulty of access.

The consortium members of the IMPACT project are E.ON Engineering, RWE npower, Doosan Babcock, Alstom Power, Goodwin Steel Casting and Loughborough University

For more information, please contact Jerry Lord

Find out more about Digital Image Correlation

Find out more about NPL's work in the Energy sector.

Last Updated: 16 Apr 2012
Created: 1 Feb 2011