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Generating Energy

Power generation technologies for mitigating climate change

For stable electric power supply and climate change mitigation, Toshiba Group is developing technologies to reduce CO2 emissions of thermal power as well as developing and spreading renewable energy technologies such as hydroelectric, geothermal, wind, and photovoltaic power. The Group is also making sustained efforts to develop technologies for safety of nuclear power.

Thermal Power

Initiative for zero-emissions thermal power generation

Thermal power generation systems are important from an energy security perspective, but at the same time there is great need to reduce CO2 emissions. Toshiba Group is working to achieve the highest level of power generation efficiency by using Advanced Ultra Super Critical (A-USC) coal-fired power generation and high-efficiency gas combined- cycle power generation as well as to collect at least 90% of CO2 emissions by combining CO2 capture and CO2 storage technologies. Furthermore, by combining supercritical CO2 cycle power generation, which does not emit CO2 into the atmosphere, with CO2 storage technology, we aim to collect 100% of CO2 emissions (zero emissions).

[Image] Toshiba Group's thermal power generation for a low-carbon society
Toshiba Group's thermal power generation for a low-carbon society

Development of A-USC coal-fired power generation technology

The advanced ultra super critical (A-USC) coal-fired power generation system is a coal-fired power generation system with 700°C-class ultra supercritical steam. In ordinary advanced thermal power generation, the steam temperature is approximately 600°C. However, in A-USC coal-fired power generation, the steam temperature is raised to 700°C or more in order to greatly improve power generation efficiency by 46% or more (high heating value standard). We are currently working to commercialize this technology.

A-USC system diagram
[Image] A-USC system diagram

Development of high-efficiency gas combined-cycle power generation

[Image] Overview: Combined cycle thermal power plant
Overview: Combined cycle thermal power plant

Combined-cycle power generation uses gas and steam turbines in combination. By harnessing waste gas energy, it improves efficiency compared to coal-fired thermal power generation and also reduces CO2 emissions per unit of generated power. It realizes the world's highest efficiency of 62% (low heating value standard).

Commercialization of carbon capture technology

In order to commercialize technology for capturing CO2 from exhaust gas emitted from thermal power plants, Toshiba Group is planning to build commercial plants and proposing applications of our system to potential customers based on know-how gained through over 8,600 hours of verification tests at the Mikawa pilot plant in Fukuoka Prefecture. In October 2012, as part of the Plant Biomass Energy Utilization Project for Saga City's Incineration Plant, we captured CO2 from the incineration plant's exhaust gas at a purity rate of over 99%, one of this technology's distinctive features.

Development of a supercritical CO2 cycle power generation system

A supercritical CO2 cycle power generation system is a high-efficiency power generation system designed to drive turbines by hightemperature, high-pressure CO2 generated by burning fuel with pure oxygen. It generates electricity while simultaneously capturing CO2. As the system also uses pure oxygen to burn fuel, it is an environmentally conscious thermal power generation system that does not generate NOx and can capture pure CO2 without carbon capture technology. We are currently working to commercialize this system.

Supercritical CO2 cycle system diagram
[Image] Supercritical CO2 cycle system diagram

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Case Study: Development of A-USC steam turbines

Coal, which can be found in abundance in various parts of the world, is an important fossil fuel for ensuring a stable energy supply. In an effort to use coal efficiently, Toshiba is working to develop thermal power generation using advanced ultra-supercritical (A-USC) steam turbines. By raising the temperature of steam used to 700°C, A-USC steam turbines improve efficiency by approximately 10% compared to conventional systems, thus reducing CO2 emissions. Commercialization of A-USC steam turbines requires materials that can withstand a high temperature of 700°C; we are working to develop such materials and conducting tests to verify the strength of our turbine equipment.

A-USC steam turbine
[Image] A-USC steam turbine

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Hydroelectric Power

Toshiba Group has delivered about 2,000 units of both turbines and generators, totally over 58 GW of hydroelectric power generation equipment, to more than 40 countries around the world.

We play an active part in rehabilitating aged hydro power generation facilities. To rehabilitate turbines, we apply advanced flow analysis technology to increase output by improving turbine efficiency.

Example of turbine rehabilitation technology
[Image] Example of turbine rehabilitation technology

We also have the world's best-in-class technologies and achievements for pumped storage systems, in which water is pumped up using surplus power during nighttime and power is generated during daytime to offset power-demand peaks, as well as for adjustable speed pumped storage systems that are effective in power system stabilization. In addition, we play an active part in making effective use of hydroelectric energy. Our micro hydroelectric power generation system Hydro-eKIDS™ has been well received. Moreover, we have developed adjustable-speed small hydroelectric power generation systems to effectively use the specific amounts of water* constantly being released into rivers from dams where water levels fluctuate significantly. In the future, we will continue to develop and promote the use of hydroelectric power generation, the most frequently used type of renewable energy, by offering a wide range of product lineups, from large-capacity to small hydroelectric systems.

Adjustable speed small hydroelectric power generation system
[Image] Adjustable speed small hydroelectric power generation system

*
To maintain the environment downstream of dams, a specific amount of water is constantly released into the river from the dams even during periods other than floods and irrigation.

Micro hydroelectric power generation system Hydro-eKIDS™ equipment selection table
[Image]

*
Five types of standard units are available for use to generate from 1 to 200 kW of electricity.
Toshiba Group has also operated micro hydropower generation systems for 15 years and delivered or received orders for 75 systems in 46 locations.

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Case Studies in FY2013

Case Study: Development of ocean current power generation systems

Toshiba is working to develop ocean current power generation systems as a clean, stable power source; such systems make use of the huge amounts of energy generated by currents running along the coast of Japan throughout the year, such as the Japan Current (Kuroshio). By mooring these systems on the seabed, letting them float at sea, and allowing them to respond to currents running in the deep sea, they can be operated stably without being affected by vessels or waves. By NEDO's support, we are developing element technologies required for various types of equipment, including turbines, generators, power transmission systems, and floating bodies.

Conceptual diagram of an ocean current power generation system floating at sea
[Image] Conceptual diagram of an ocean current power generation system floating at sea

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Geothermal Power

Toshiba Group delivers facilities equivalent to 24% of the world's total geothermal power generation capacity. According to the temperature properties of geothermal sources, we provide optimal geothermal power generation systems, focusing on flash steam systems that require particularly advanced technologies, to make efficient use of thermal energy. Toshiba Group has a proprietary high-corrosion-resistance technology called "super rotor" technology. By applying this technology to steam turbines, the turbines can be operated for a long period of time without trouble even in highly corrosive geothermal plant environments, thereby ensuring long plant lives, high operational reliability, and high operating rates. The Geysers Geothermal Power Plant in the U.S. has an established track record of operating this system using our super rotor technology for a period of ten years without requiring inspection.

[Image] Geothermal Power

We also promote the use of Geoportable™, a 2MW class compact geothermal power generation system. Geoportable™ has a small footprint and contributes to effective use of geothermal energy in locations with only one or two geothermal wells. Geoportable™ can also be used as a packaged unit to shorten the period before delivery from planning to operation, thereby enabling quick return on investment.

[Image] Compact geothermal turbine generator
Compact geothermal turbine generator

[Image] Waita Geothermal Power Plant
Waita Geothermal Power Plant

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Nuclear Power

Ongoing efforts to improve the safety of nuclear power plants

Toshiba Group is working to develop new technologies to improve the safety of nuclear power plants.

Based on lessons learned from the accident at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station, we are striving for restarting nuclear power plants in Japan. To this end, in addition to improving power supply systems by using backup generators and storage batteries as well as enhancing nuclear reactor cooling systems by using feed water injection and mobile cooling systems, we are also implementing measures to enhance monitoring functions and to remove radioactive materials for preventing serious accidents and mitigating the effects of radiation.

For restarting nuclear power plants
[Image] For restarting nuclear power plants

*
D/G: Diesel power generator; P: pump

To further improve the safety of nuclear power plants, we will continue ongoing efforts against airplane crashes and cyber attack as well as to develop a reactor core material that can reduce the amount of hydrogen in the event of serious accidents.

Meanwhile, to meet growing energy demand worldwide, Westinghouse Electric Company is constructing new plants in China and the United States, each with four advanced pressurized water reactors (AP1000™) equipped with passive safety systems.*

Toshiba Group will continue to make concerted efforts, both in Japan and overseas, to expand the use of safe nuclear power.

* Passive safety system:
A system that cools a nuclear reactor by harnessing gravity and other natural forces without using pumps and other equipment that require external power

[Image] Accident-resistant reactor core
Accident-resistant reactor core

[Image] AP1000™ construction site
AP1000™ construction site
Photo © Georgia Power Company. All rights reserved.

Photovoltaic Power Generation

Promoting the use of high-efficiency photovoltaic power generation systems for industrial and housing use

In order to contribute to the mitigation of climate change and effective use of limited fossil fuel resources, countries around the world are promoting the use of photovoltaic power generation; in Japan, too, public-private partnerships for its wider use are in progress. Toshiba Group contributes to reducing CO2 emissions by promoting the use of photovoltaic power generation systems that achieve the highest level of efficiency and long-term stability.

Toshiba Group provides total support for industrial photovoltaic power generation systems, from system development to construction and maintenance. In addition to the experience we have acquired through construction of mega solar systems for electric power companies, we also make the most of Toshiba Group's comprehensive capabilities, including our engineering skills and our experience in manufacturing high and extra high voltage devices. Thus, our mega solar systems achieve the highest level of efficiency and long-term stability.

We have delivered large-scale photovoltaic power plants with capacities of 100MW class, including Tahara Solar - Wind Joint Project (50MW). We are also increasing sales of photovoltaic modules for other contractors responsible for EPC (engineering, procurement, and construction) of photovoltaic power plants, thereby contributing to reductions in CO2 emissions.

[Image] Tomatoh Abira Solar Park Corp. SoftBank Tomatoh Abira Solar Park
Tomatoh Abira Solar Park Corp.
SoftBank Tomatoh Abira Solar Park

[Image] Tahara Solar - Wind Joint Project Tahara Solar/Wind Electricity Generation Plant
Tahara Solar - Wind Joint Project
Tahara Solar/Wind Electricity Generation Plant

[Image] Idemitsu Kosan Co., Ltd. Himeji Power Plant
Idemitsu Kosan Co., Ltd.
Himeji Power Plant

[Image] Kumamoto Arao Solar Park Corp. SoftBank Kumamoto Arao Solar Park
Kumamoto Arao Solar Park Corp.
SoftBank Kumamoto Arao Solar Park

[Image]250-W photovoltaic module
250-W photovoltaic module

In the area of residential photovoltaic power generation systems, we began selling a 250-W photovoltaic module with a conversion efficiency of 20.1% in December 2012. This conversion efficiency has already exceeded the 2020 goal (20%) for practical use modules set by NEDO* in the photovoltaic power generation roadmap.

Thanks to its high efficiency, Toshiba's system that uses this module generates a large amount of power per area, thereby further contributing to reducing CO2 emissions.

* NEDO:
New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization

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