Technology Centre Mongstad (TCM) is the world’s largest and most flexible test centre for developing CO2 capture technologies and a leading competence centre for carbon capture.
Core business and operation
According to the International Energy Agency, carbon capture can contribute about 20% of reduction in CO2 emissions needed to prevent uncontrolled global warming. Therefore, testing and verification of CO2 capture capture technologies is a very important part of the solution to the climate crisis.
TCM is located at one of Norway’s most complex industrial facilities, Mongstad in Hordaland county.
TCM is owned by the Norwegian State, through Gassnova (73.9%), together with the industrial partners Equinor (8,7%), Shell (8,7%) and TotalEnergies (8,7%). Equinor is the operator of the facility. TCM has had two ownership periods (Participant Agreements) since startup in 2012. The third period lasts until the end of 2023. The current owners have been in TCM since startup, except Total which joined the partnership in 2017 after Sasol Energy (owner in the period 2012 – 2017).
TCM is advancing carbon capture for a cleaner and greener future, by bridging the gap between technology developers, science and industrial application of CO2 technologies. The main objective of TCM is to test, verify and demonstrate different technologies related to cost-efficient and industrial scale CO2 capture. Moreover, we provide advisory services to carbon capture projects. Our goal is to facilitate the advancement of carbon capture technology for mass deployment across industries. We are an important part of Norway’s contribution to mitigate climate change.
Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is one of the few technological solutions that can contribute to a significant reduction in emissions from industrial operations based on coal or gas power. In addition, CCS is crucial for decarbonising industries such as cement and steel where production itself results in large CO2 emissions.
For carbon capture and storage to play an effective role in climate change mitigation, international cooperation on developing and commercializing new technology is essential. We will continue to further solvent based (capture liquid) technology testing and have widen our offering by Site for Emerging Technologies and expanding our consulting services.
Our core values are safety, collaboration, integrity and innovation. Living these values helps us develop trusting relationships with our clients.
What we offer
For technology developers, we offer the lowest possible technological and financial risk by testing and verifying carbon capture technology ahead of full-scale application. We give access to instrumentation, analytics, and engineers at the world’s largest carbon capture test facility and are taking part in problem solving after the commissioning of full-scale investments. TCM provides industrial testing with two flue gas sources in a single purpose-built facility with 24/7 operations.
For project developers, we offer to lower risk investment and ability to act as a catalyst for industrial projects, and advisory services on technical and systems integration. TCM is an arena for new component testing and problem solving after the commissioning of full-scale investments. We also offer to advise on solvent degradation, corrosion, emission issues and waste handling.
TCM has a unique scale and flexibility in terms of ability to simulate real-world conditions for post-combustion capture and to test a multitude of different mature and emerging technologies in a cost-effective manner.
Large-scale and real-world testing fills an important gap between small-scale piloting and full-scale deployment. We give ability to test a large variety of technologies on industrial flue gases onsite, and comprehensive open-access datasets on industrial-scale for benchmarking purposes.
TCM has a well-earned reputation built on public research, proprietary testing and a highly qualified workforce with unique competence. Our strong partnerships are enabling TCM to bring together clients, technology developers and other key stakeholders.
At TCM you will experience a relentless focus on health, safety and environment, following the highest international requirements.
TCM is providing both world-class infrastructure and skilled technical resources to ease vendors and technologies’ route to the market. Our team, consisting of approx. 65 staff members, will ensure that all important aspects related to testing carbon capture technologies are taken care of. The personnel are mainly seconded staff by the owners in addition to external hires.
TCM follows the world’s strictest HSEQ standards. We have inherited a safety culture stemming from our energy industrial owners. Established work processes and safety barriers are in place to ensure that confidential information is handled safely.
TCM staff have gained unique technical expertise from the scientific research and proprietary technology testing that we undertake at the world’s largest carbon capture testing center.
The initiative to build Technology Center Mongstad was taken by the Stoltenberg government in October 2006 in collaboration with former Statoil, now Equinor. The planning of the test center began in June 2007 in a collaboration between Gassnova and five industrial companies, of which Statoil was the project manager. In January 2009, the proposition regarding the establishment of Technology Center Mongstad (TCM) was sent to the Storting (the Norwegian Parliament). The investment decision was made by the partners in TCM in June 2009, after approval by the Government and the Storting. After the formal establishment of TCM on the 17th of June 2009, it took three years before the center came into operation. In total, approx. NOK 6 billion has been invested in construction and further development of the plant.
TCM was initially established as the first step in the development of a full-scale process to capture CO2 from the combined heat and power plant (CHP) at Mongstad. The purpose was to identify, develop, test and qualify possible capture technologies and technical solutions with the goal of reducing costs and technical and environmental risks associated with the construction and operation of a full-scale CO2 capture plant.
In 2013, however, the overall risk of building a full-scale facility was considered too high. Although the technology was considered mature, high costs and uncertainty associated with the continued operation of the oil refinery led to the decision not to proceed with the full scale facility.
The owners and staff then gathered around the vision to make TCM the world’s largest and most advanced centre for testing technologies for capturing CO2 prior to full scale, and a global leader for competence in this field.
The activities at the test center have become crucial for the development of technologies which can be used in all kinds of industrial plants around the world.
Collaboration within the carbon capture and storage community is key for the mass deployment of the technology in the future. TCM collaborates with research institutes, the private sector and government entities across the globe.
The International Test Center Network (ITCN) was initiated by TCM in 2012 to enable knowledge sharing between CO2-technology test centers.