(EnergyAsia, December 15 2011, Thursday) — Denmark’s Maersk Oil said it and Germany’s Siemens have agreed to jointly develop and build turbines for its proprietary tri-generation clean power generation technology.

Maersk Oil said its TriGen power generator burns natural gas mixed with pure oxygen to produce clean power, water and ‘reservoir ready’ carbon dioxide (CO2) that is captured and injected into hydrocarbon fields to enhance oil and gas recovery.

The company, a subsidiary of the A.P. Moller-Maersk Group, said it acquired licensing rights to the space industry-derived pure oxygen combustor technology from US-based Clean Energy Systems (CES) in January 2011. Siemens will build turbines specially adapted to the combustion process to significantly increase the efficiency of the electricity produced.

CES has proven the TriGen technology on a small scale over that past 15 years. Now, in collaboration with Maersk Oil, Siemens and the US Department of Energy, it is testing TriGen on a commercial scale power plant in California.

Maersk Oil and Siemens signed a memorandum of understanding at the recent 20th World Petroleum Conference in Doha, Qatar, with the German firm agreeing to fund and develop the ‘oxyfuel’ turbines over the next five years.

Bob Alford, Maersk Oil’s TriGen Project Manager, said:

“The agreement with Siemens is another milestone for our innovative clean power project, helping to mature the TriGen technology to a stage where it can be used widely and commercially.

“Our goal is to be able to offer a unique product that for the first time joins oil and gas production together with power generation in one integrated project. This offers not just zero-emission electricity and pure water but also the ability to extract oil and gas that would otherwise be non-producible through enhanced oil recovery (EOR).

“It is an ideal solution for water-parched Gulf states that have reservoirs that can benefit from CO2 driven-EOR. It is also well suited for countries in South East Asia where many stranded contaminated gas fields could be unlocked using the flexible TriGen technology.”

David Henson, Siemens Energy’s Head of Conceptual Engineering and Services, said:

“The new turbine, named SXT-150, is backed by our vast experience in turbine development. Siemens’ turbine work is focused on providing the materials capable of withstanding high pressures and temperatures, handling the corrosive environment resulting from the CO2 and steam mixture, and implementing changes to increase power. In addition, Siemens will design and deliver the associated equipment to complete the TriGen power system.”

Siemens is converting a conventional gas/air turbine to a gas/oxygen turbine for a commercial project in California. The converted turbine will be hooked up to a power grid in North Los Angeles next year with the capacity to deliver 150 megawatts of electricity to meet the energy needs of over 100,000 homes.