Test Center Network gives global collaboration a boost
Handover of ITCN chairmanship in Houston. Standing: Chris Smith, DOE, and Kim Greene from Southern Company. Front: Roxann Laird, Southern Company and Roy Vardheim,TCM
The International Test Center Network (ITCN) has during its three years of operation strengthened international collaboration between key players in the CCS community, and by that contributed to progressing CCS globally.
-There is no doubt that test facilities around the world have much to gain by sharing their perspectives and lessons learned from CCS research and development. The network has provided a valuable meeting place and has facilitated increased cooperation between the members on a wide range of topics, says Roy Vardheim, managing director of Technology Centre Mongstad, Norway, which has been chairing ITCN since its formation in late 2012.
ITCN was initiated by TCM and National Carbon Capture Center (NCCC) in 2012 to enable carbon capture test facilities around the world to progress technologies that will be key components of our clean energy future. The network aims to share knowledge that can accelerate technology commercialization, including, for example, next-generation technologies that can significantly reduce the costs of electricity generation (and industrial products) using CO2 capture.
Since its launch, some of the world’s leading carbon capture and storage (CCS) test centers have been sharing knowledge from test activities at large test facilities in order to establish a level playing field for technology vendors to reduce costs, as well as the technical, environmental and financial risks currently associated with CCS.
At the CSLF Ministerial meeting in Washington DC in November 2013, the United States and Norway decided to formally support the ITCN to increase knowledge transfer from carbon capture test facilities around the world. The first kick-off meeting under the new umbrella was held in Brussels November 2013, and since then the members have met every year, and held numerous teleconferences. Workshops have been held over two days with extensive presentations from all members and thorough discussions which resulted in exchanges of experiences on a range of technical, operations and business topics.
Through ITCN the members strengthen their own competence through access to other’s learnings and experiences, get enhanced opportunities for market collaboration, have a valuable meeting place that has facilitated and contributed to bi- or multi-lateral collaboration agreements, can offer common promotion of technology testing, and get enhanced the opportunities for cross-national funding. ITCN has also given enhanced opportunities to influence and improve technology qualification through common contributions to benchmarking and harmonisation of procedures.
TCM, Southern Company/National Carbon Capture Center (NCCC) of USA, SaskPower of Canada, and Uniper (formerly E.ON) of Germany were among the key founding members. Since then Pilot Advanced Capture Technologies (PACT), a part of UK CCS Research Centre, CO2CRC of Australia and SINTEF Materials and Chemistry of Norway have joined. Early 2016 the membership will be further extended by CSIRO of Australia and Korean Institute of Energy Research (KIER).
At a ceremony in Houston February 24, the chairmanship of the network was handed over from Norway to the United States. Assistance Secretary for Energy Chris Smith from US Department of Energy, Roxann Laird, New chair of network, Kim Greene Southern Company, Chief Operating Officer, and managing director of TCM, Roy Vardheim participated.
NCCC will hold the chairmanship on behalf of the US Department of Energy.