Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) is partnering with Wärtsilä, a Finnish corporation which manufactures and services power sources and other equipment in the marine and energy markets, and Finland’s Lappeenranta University of Technology to study alternative fuels. The aim of the study is to achieve a technically and commercially viable solution that will allow NPPD to proceed with an industrial scale pilot project using alternative fuels.
“The aim of the business case is to achieve a technically and commercially viable solution that will allow NPPD to proceed with an industrial scale pilot project. Both parties have expressed the intention that this initiative will help accelerate the move towards a future where energy will be produced from 100 percent renewable carbon free sources,” NPPD said in a statement. “The specified alternative fuels include methanol, dimethyl ether (DME), ammonia, and hydrogen, or synthesized from hydrogen using CO2 and nitrogen.”
The team will evaluate performance and commercial information on the various fuel capabilities of Wärtsilä engines, provide input for the economic model, and develop an economic evaluation model. By demonstrating the results with test engines, it is expected that the conversion of hydrogen to methanol using CO2, and then burning the methanol as fuel to produce electricity, will be successfully established.
“We are delighted to be working with Wärtsilä on this very important project. By converting hydrogen to methanol, it will be possible to use this as fuel in Wärtsilä engines. This has dual benefits, since it helps us commercially while at the same time promoting an environmentally sustainable means for producing electricity,” said NPPD CEO and President Pat Pope.
“For LUT University, this is an important collaborative initiative in the research and utilisation of Power-to-X technology. We are pleased to have the opportunity to collaborate with global players and we are thrilled that it’s all starting in the United States of all places,” said Juha-Matti Saksa, Rector, LUT University.