The work presented here reports the first study in which the speciation, behaviour and fate of mercury (Hg) have been evaluated under oxy-fuel combustion at the largest oxy-Pulverised Coal Combustion (oxy-PCC) demonstration plant to date during routine operating conditions and partial exhaust flue gas re-circulation to the boiler. The effect of the CO2-rich flue gas re-circulation on Hg has also been evaluated. Results reveal that oxy-PCC operational conditions play a significant role on Hg partitioning and fate because of the continuous CO2-rich flue gas re-circulations to the boiler. Mercury escapes from the cyclone in a gaseous form as Hg2+ (68%) and it is the prevalent form in the CO2-rich exhaust flue gas (99%) with lower proportions of Hg0 (1.3%). The overall retention rate for gaseous Hg is around 12%; Hg0 is more prone to be retained (95%) while Hg2+ shows a negative efficiency capture for the whole installation. The negative Hg2+ capture efficiencies are due to the continuous CO2-rich exhaust flue gas recirculation to the boiler with enhanced Hg contents. Calculations revealed that 44 mg of Hg were re-circulated to the boiler as a result of 2183 re-circulations of CO2-rich flue gas. Especial attention must be paid to the role of the CO2-rich exhaust flue gas re-circulation to the boiler on the Hg enrichment in Fly Ashes (FAs).
Córdoba, P., Maroto-valer, M., Delgado, M. A., Diego, R., Font, O., & Querol, X. (2016). Speciation, behaviour, and fate of mercury under oxy-fuel combustion conditions. Environmental Research, 145, 154-161. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2015.12.002