Rapid Sorbent Validation Protocol (RSVP)


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EPRI’s RSVP technology was developed in response to a need to continue evaluating mercury control options while allowing plants to remain in compliance with mercury emission limits. Normally, testing involves taking existing control offline and then evaluating new and different options at various treatment levels. The risk with the traditional methodology is the amount of time a plant might operate outside of compliance.

The RSVP technology was developed by E1E in partnership with EPRI to solve this specific problem. The technology, broadly speaking, is based on United States EPA Method 30B sorbent traps for measuring mercury. The development of the technology involved taking a basic concept and building a working test methodology that was able to discern real and sometimes subtle performance differences between a wide variety of mercury control sorbents. E1E developed the initial protocol and measurement method within our laboratory. Development of the technology involved balancing a variety of distinct operational issues while maintaining the ability to quantify performance differences in closely related sorbent products.

Following development and testing efforts in the E1E laboratory, E1E constructed a field testing prototype and used the prototype to evaluate the technology on real flue gas. The results from the prototype highlighted several areas for improvement, but also demonstrated the real potential of the technology as a testing methodology.

E1E made iterative improvements on the design of the technology and testing equipment at each stage of the development, the result of which is commercially available technology that has been used by multiple utilities to evaluate mercury control options. The technology demonstrates performance differences between products such that plant operators can evaluate a broad swath of products with no risk to plant operations and compliance. The method has a proven track record of the test performance mimicking that of performance observed on operating units.

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In addition, the technology is being utilized by industry in the product development arena. A new sorbent technology can now be evaluated on real flue gas with out risk to the plant and with remarkably small quantities of the candidate material. Risks is eliminated for the end user and costs are reduced for sorbent developers.

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