The ECCSEL consortium teams up selected Centres of Excellence on Carbon Capture and Storage research (CCS) from 10 countries across Europe. The mission is to develop a European distributed, integrated Research Infrastructure (RI), involving the construction and updating of research facilities, in order to:
- Provide a scientific foundation to respond systematically to the urgent R&D needs in CCS at a Pan-European level, in a short and long term perspective
- Maintain Europe at the forefront of the international CCS scientific community
- Make the European Research Area more attractive for both European and international scientists, reinforce cooperative connections between research institutions and attain greater insight into the social and economic impact of European science.
- Optimize the value of the community financial support through better utilization of new and existing research infrastructure
The consortium aims to establish ECCSEL as a robust and sustainable legally independent entity. The ambition is to become one of several important instruments that the European Commission can utilize and support to meet the objectives of the European Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET Plan), and to interact with relevant bodies such as European Energy Research Alliance (EERA), the ZEP-TP, Lighthouse projects, EII, etc..
ECCSEL aims to facilitate projects in the European Commission’s Framework programmes, future European industrial initiatives, and education of specialists for the new CCS industry.
Carbon dioxide capture and storage (CCS) is identified as a future key technology for reducing emissions from fossil fuels. Global demand is large, in particular from emerging economies. However, further research and technological development is urgently needed if CCS is to become a viable and cost-effective technology.
ECCSEL, short for European Carbon dioxide Capture and Storage Laboratory Infrastructure, was proposed by NTNU and SINTEF on behalf of the Norwegian Government, and put on the official European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) updated Roadmap in 2008 as the only new entrant within the energy theme.
ECCSEL is planned to be in operation by 2015 as a strong and coordinated pan-European distributed Research Infrastructure (RI) within the field of CCS.
The ECCSEL preparatory phase started January 1st 2011 and will last for approximately 4 years.
What is CCS?
Carbon abatement technologies (CATs) offer options for using fossil fuels during the transition to a low carbon energy system. Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) is the most innovative of these but also offers the potential for the deepest cuts in CO2 emissions. It involves the deployment of a chain of technologies for CO2 capture, transportation and storage, rather than developments focused on the combustion plant alone. Most of the technologies needed to implement CCS are currently available through other applications but there is an urgent need to validate the operation of the whole CCS technology chain.
CCS has the potential to be an essential technology to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and allow the continued use of fossil fuels for energy security, without damaging climate security. (NZEC 2011)
Development of new infrastructures will be proposed, and will require large investments by the parties involved (currently budgeted at more than 80 million Euros). The involvement of national funding bodies and authorities will be specially important and unique for ECCSEL.
The facilities being developed will enable more advanced levels of research in capture, transport and storage of CO2. Some examples of existing facilities that have the potential to be a part of the ECCSEL infrastructure are:
- CO2 capture test facility at Tiller (SINTEF/NTNU, Norway)
- New packed column for solvent characterization (IFP, France)
- Post-combustion coal based pilot plant at Brindisi, (ENEL, Italy)
- Oxy-fuel test facility at El Bierzo (CIUDEN, Spain)
- High pressure oxy-fuel combustion test rig (DLR, Germany)
- Pulverized coal test facility at Amyantaion-Filotas (CERTH, Greece)
- Rock Mechanical & Geophysical Property (S&P-wave) Testing System (BGS, UK)
- Tri-axial flow cell for gas injection/displacement in ECBM applications (ETH Zurich, Switzerland)
- MONTMIRAL natural CO2 field for CO2 storage (BRGM, France)
- PANAREA (off-shore) and LATERA (on-shore) CO2 leaking natural laboratories (OGS, Italy)
- Laboratory facilities for fundamental R&D
The ECCSEL RI is expected to be operational by 2015.