SGI REPORTS $72 MILLION CLEAN COAL PROJECT GIVEN U.S. GOVERNMENT APPROVAL FOR FULL-SCALE PLANT OPERATIONS
SGI REPORTS $72 MILLION CLEAN COAL PROJECT GIVEN
U.S. GOVERNMENT APPROVAL FOR FULL-SCALE PLANT OPERATIONS
LA JOLLA, Calif., Aug. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- SGI International (NASDAQ: SGII) reported that the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has given approval for a Wyoming clean coal demonstration plant, using coal-processing technology developed by SGI, to move into full-scale operations. The DOE has released on its Fossil Energy TechLine Service the following related information, which is quoted here in its entirety.
"The U.S. Department of Energy has given the operators of a government industry cofunded clean coal technology plant in Wyoming the go-ahead to move into full test operations.
"The department approved the application of the plant's owner, ENCOAL Corp. to move ahead with maximum production of two clean, high value fuels at its recently built demonstration plant at the Triton Coal Co.'s Buckskin Mine near Gillette. The two fuels -- one liquid, one solid -- will be made from supplies of low-rank coals that are abundantly available in the western United States. While these coals are attractive for being low in sulfur, they also contain high levels of moisture which lowers their heating value.
"The department's action signals its judgment that the project has successfully met its construction and startup goals and that it merits government co-financing for a planned two-year series of test runs.
"The approval makes available $10.6 million in additional government cost-sharing for the third and final phase of the $72 million demonstration project. The department is paying half of the project's total cost, including the cost of design and construction, through its multibillion dollar Clean Coal Technology Program.
"The Encoal project is unique in the Clean Coal Technology Program. It takes a low sulfur coal with a low heating value and treats it in a way that produces high value products.
"One product is a high-BTU, low-moisture, low-sulfur coal that can be burned in power plants and meet the strictest emission standards. These types of clean fuels are expected to be in increasing demand as new Clean Air Act requirements go into effect. The other is a liquid similar in quality to a low sulfur Number 6 fuel oil that can be used directly as a boiler fuel or as a refinery feedstock to produce a variety of specialty fuels.
"ENCOAL has already secured two buyers for products from the demonstration plant. Wisconsin Power and Light has agreed to purchase about 30,000 tons of solid fuel to burn in its coal-fired power plants. TEX-PAR Energy Inc. will buy up to 135,000 barrels per year of liquid fuels that it will market to industries. Additional sales of the solid fuel product are now being negotiated."
Process Ideal for Low Rank Coals Around the World
"The process used at the ENCOAL plant is ideally suited for the vast supplies of high moisture, low heating value coals located in the Powder River Basin, the Dakotas, the Gulf Coast and Alaska. It is also expected to perform equally well with similarly constituted coals found in southeast Asia, the Pacific Rim and eastern Europe. A state-of-the-art computerized control system used in the LFC process allows operators to tailor the plant's operations to produce the most economical suite of products to meet specific and changing market needs.
"Design and construction of the Gillette, Wyo., plant were completed in April within the planned budget three months ahead of schedule."
Initial Test Run Exceeds Expectations
"As part of its startup activities, the 1,000 ton-per-day plant completed a 36-hour shakedown test in June while operating at about 70 percent of its capacity. The initial test run produced solid and liquid fuels that met or exceeded product specifications.
"The ENCOAL plant uses a process called LFC, or Liquids From Coal. The technology was developed by SGI International of La Jolla, Calif., and is owned by the TEK-KOL Partnership. Shell Mining Co. and SGI are equal partners in the TEK-KOL partnership. With the LFC process, coal is dried and heated under carefully controlled temperatures to partially gasify the coal. The gaseous vapors are cleaned of particulates and cooled, condensing out a liquid product.
"Because the remaining solid fuel is nearly moisture-free, it has a much higher heating value than the raw coals.
"When in full-test operations, the plant will be able to produce about 180,000 tons of solid coal-like fuel along with 150,000 barrels of liquids per year. A commercial scale plant would be about 10 times the size of the ENCOAL demonstration facility.
"ENCOAL is currently a wholly owned subsidiary of Shell Mining Co. Shell Oil recently announced plans to sell the mining company to the Zeigler Coal Holding Co., creating one of the nation's largest coal companies. While details of the agreement have yet to be worked out, Zeigler has informed DOE that it is supportive of the Clean Coal Technology project.
"The ENCOAL project was selected in the third round of the Clean Coal Technology Program competition. Government oversight of the project is handled by the Energy Department's Morgantown (WV) Energy Technology Center."
SGI International is a developer of new energy technologies and clean coal projects worldwide, with its corporate headquarters at 1200 Prospect St., Suite 325, La Jolla, CA 92037.
/CONTACT: SGI Corporate Communications, 619-551-1090/
(SGII) CO: SGI International; ENCOAL Corp.; Shell Mining Co. ST: California IN: OIL SU:
BP-JL -- SD002 -- 6932 08/05/92 08:31 EDT