Ammonia is being evaluated worldwide as an alternative energy carrier for hydrogen in future low-carbon energy scenarios. Ammonia is presently the second most produced chemical in the world. This global experience with ammonia has resulted in development of mature technologies for its production, handling, transport, and storage. The global supply chain already exists, and distribution infrastructure is well established locally in many countries. Additionally, safety regulations concerning the handling, transport, and storage of ammonia are well established. Ammonia could form the basis of an integrated energy storage and distribution decarbonization solution for multiple industries beyond its historic use in the production of fertilizers and other chemicals.
EPRI is evaluating the opportunities for coal/ammonia co-firing to understand the potential benefits in avoiding premature shutdown of valuable coal power generation assets and the technical challenges that may occur regarding degradation of boiler components (e.g., waterwalls, headers, piping) due to the changing combustion profile from ammonia co-firing. This paper summarizes ongoing research in ammonia co-firing with coal and discusses future applications.