The GE and Penrice Consortium, which brings together GE and Penrice Soda Holdings Ltd, today announced an agreement with Australian coal seam gas producer QGC Pty Limited to design, build and operate a brine pilot plant (BPP) at Penrice’s chemical works at Osborne, South Australia. The GE Penrice BPP is part of a wider initiative by the coal seam gas industry to investigate the technical and commercial viability of producing products such as table salt and soda ash from brine, a by-product of coal seam gas water treatment.
The primary objective of the BPP is to demonstrate the ability of the GE-Penrice process to extract and selectively precipitate salts such as sodium bicarbonate, sodium carbonate and sodium chloride from the final brine streams. The plant will be operational in early 2012 and will provide new opportunities for the management of coal seam gas water (CSG).
The BPP will be based on technology developed by the GE and Penrice Consortium, for the purpose of extracting salts from CSG water and produce commercial grades of sodium bicarbonate, soda ash and sodium chloride.
“This is a powerful example of how GE’s water and process technologies are being used to provide a solution for our customers,” said Irshaad Hakim, regional sales leader, engineered systems—water and process technologies for GE Power & Water. “The contract with QGC is the first step in making this technology commercially scalable and is an important initiative. We will be working closely with Penrice and QGC to further develop this process and are excited by the opportunities it presents.”
Guy Roberts, Penrice managing director, said: “Our aim is for a commercial scale plant using the GE Penrice process that will cost-effectively treat the coal seam gas brine and produce saleable chemicals such as soda ash, sodium bicarbonate and salt, which is the business we already are in.”
“This is another positive step in growing and diversifying Penrice’s chemicals business by leveraging this salt extraction technology. We look forward to working collaboratively with GE to achieve excellent outcomes from this pilot project,” he added.
GE (ge.com) is an advanced technology, services and finance company taking on the world’s toughest challenges. Dedicated to innovation in energy, health, transportation and infrastructure, GE operates in more than 100 countries and employs about 300,000 people worldwide.
GE also serves the energy sector by providing technology and service solutions that are based on a commitment to quality and innovation. The company continues to invest in new technology solutions and grow through strategic acquisitions to strengthen its local presence and better serve customers around the world. The businesses that comprise GE Energy—GE Power & Water, GE Energy Management and GE Oil & Gas—work together with more than 100,000 global employees and 2010 revenues of $38 billion, to provide integrated product and service solutions in all areas of the energy industry including coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear energy; renewable resources such as water, wind, solar and biogas; as well as other alternative fuels and new grid modernization technologies to meet 21st century energy needs.
Penrice Soda Holdings Limited (ASX code: PSH) is Australia’s only manufacturer of soda ash and sodium bicarbonate and one of the world’s largest sodium bicarbonate marketing companies. It also operates a limestone mine and is a significant supplier of industrial minerals and civil products.
The company is committed to driving shareholder value through the manufacture and supply of a range of world-class products across a variety of industries and countries including packaging, building and construction, mining, detergents, food and personal care, stockfeed and environmental control/water purification.
Howard Masto, Masto Public Relations
P: +1 518 786 6488 / E: howard.masto[.]ge.com.
Beth Coffman, Masto Public Relations
P: +1 518 786 6488 / E: beth.coffman[.]mastopr.com.
P: +61 2 9213 2312 / M: +61 423 437 621 / E: awoodhead[.]n2n.com.au.
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