H2S Emissions Control at Geothermal Plants


Courtesy of Merichem Company

The LO-CAT® II process is used to control H2S emissions and reduce odors at geothermal power plants.

Geothermal steam, considered to be a clean and environmentally friendly source of energy, is produced when water seeps into high temperature, high pressure formations below the earth's surface. The steam is brought to the surface through production wells and then expanded through a turbine to produce electricity. Coming out of the turbine is the condensed steam and any non-condensible gases (NCG) associated with the steam. The condensed steam is usually pumped back into the underground formation.

The NCG is mostly carbon dioxide (CO2) but, may contain up to 6% hydrogen sulfide (H2S). If the H2S concentration is very low, the NCG is usually vented to the atmosphere through the cooling tower. However, both the low odor threshold of H2S and the current environmental laws strictly limit the amount of H2S that may be vented into the atmosphere.

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