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Fortum signs its first commercial deal with Hindalco Industries, targets NOx reduction in power plants

Fortum has the patented technology for bringing about NOx reduction up to the statutory limits

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Fortum India, Hindalco Industries, Sanjay Aggarwal, Juha Suomi, NOx, Thermal power plants, Singrauli, Mahan, Madhya Pradesh, Climate change

Fortum, a Finnish clean energy company, signed its first commercial project with Hindalco Industries. The project is aimed at NOx reduction through combustion modification on one of the 150MW boilers located at the aluminium smelter Unit in Mahan, Singrauli district in Madhya Pradesh. The modification will enable the power plant to comply with the tightening restrictions on nitrogen oxide emissions to 290 mg/Nm3 from current levels in the unit. The timeline for completion of this project is mid Feb 2020.

Fortum has the patented technology for bringing about NOx reduction up to the statutory limits by using only primary combustion modification on the boiler with minimal capital expenses and no operating expenses. Fortum is one of the only companies who can help reduce NOx levels further below the 300 mg/Nm3 applying primary methods.

Keeping in mind, the expertise in planning and execution of NOx reduction combustion refurbishments, Sanjay Aggarwal, MD, Fortum India, said, “India is at the forefront of tackling climate change and has repeatedly made a strong case for its mitigation. As a progressive economy, the focus has always been on sustainable development, with the government strongly promoting green energy and expanding the share of renewable energy with the ambitious goal of achieving 175GW capacity by 2022. Furthermore, to extend their reach of emissions control, the government, among other things, has defined new NOx emission levels for thermal power plants in India to be achieved by 2022. However, hundreds of coal-fired boilers in the country still need to be modified, to comply with the new emission regulation.”

Juha Suomi, area director, Asia, Fortum eNext, said, “Reducing nitrogen oxides is part of curbing climate change. NOx emissions are generated in transportation, as well as in energy production during the combustion process of coal-, peat- and multifuel-fired power plants. Nitrogen oxides acidify nature and weaken air quality in cities. Like in most sectors, the advent of technology has been beneficial for overcoming challenges. In fact, it has been instrumental in making thermal power generation acceptable in this changing energy landscape. For instance, over the last 30 years, the European Union has periodically tightened the air emission regulation for thermal power plants. The implementation of advanced NOx reduction technology at the primary source of emissions i.e. at the boiler combustion will not only reduce emissions, but also enhance plant performance through optimization of the boiler operations. Moreover, with lower operating and maintenance costs compared to any other secondary NOx reduction methods, the overall life-cycle costs are kept at minimum.”

The key aspect of the NOx reduction technology developed by Fortum in the early 1990s involves impacting the combustion process by modifying the over firing of the combustion air. The solution is an efficient and in terms of operating expenses economical way to reduce emissions because significantly less nitrogen oxides is generated.  The approximately 50 coal-fired boiler modification projects Fortum eNext has performed in the EU area since 1994 have reduced the boilers’ emissions into the air. These modifications have reduced NOx emissions cumulatively by more than 700,000 tonnes.

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