Babcock & Wilcox (B&W) BREF Solutions

BREF Solutions for Large Combustion Plants

What is BREF?

The European BREF regulations will require all large combustion power plants to comply with stricter air emissions limits by 2022. This includes limits on mercury (Hg), sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), and particulate matter (PM).

The time to act is now. Turn to Babcock & Wilcox (B&W), an industry leader in providing a full suite of options and technologies to meet these challenges. We have the proven technical experience, know-how and responsiveness to help you lower air emissions to acceptable levels.

Our vast experience with meeting a wide range of national air regulations at power plants across the United States includes large-scale implementation planning, system design and project execution.

In addition, our experience with boiler design and combustion fundamentals makes us uniquely qualified to consider how each environmental solution will affect performance and operation of existing power plant equipment.

B&W's National Regulations Experience

U.S. EPA Clean Air Interstate Rule (CAIR)

  • primarily SO2 and NOx
  • technologies: wet and semi-dry scrubbers and SCR
  • 4 years to comply
  • B&W supplied 20 to 25% of market


U.S. EPA Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS)

Emissions Control Solutions

Mercury Control

B&W has been actively involved in mercury control systems since the early 1990s. We have multiple solutions focused on integrating a variety of technologies with other air quality control systems that may already exist at a power plant:

  • MercPlus™ fuel additive system is designed to enhance mercury emissions reduction and minimize the use of powdered activated carbon (PAC) at power plants using low chlorine coals. 
  • Absorption Plus (Hg)™ system is designed to inhibit mercury re-emission and to increase the total mercury captured and retained in a wet FGD system.
  • Mitagent™ fuel additive allows less halide usage to attain the same oxidized fraction of mercury in the flue gas.

These technologies may be combined with or even replace PAC injection, thereby reducing the volume of PAC required to achieve the required mercury emission levels.

By understanding the interrelationship between various technologies, as well as the co-benefits achieved with other air quality control systems, our solutions can save significant cost throughout the life of the plant.

B&W MercPlus™ fuel additive system
MercPlusTM (Hg+) system injection skid and storage tank

NOx Control

Low NOx Burners and Combustion Systems - Since 1971, B&W has provided more than 157,000 MW of low NOx combustion capacity (more than 10,600 burners) in both new and retrofit boiler applications. Our low NOx burner technology has been successfully applied to units with varying fuel characteristics and boiler arrangements.

Our latest and most advanced designs, the DRB-4Z® burner and the AireJet® burner, offer significant NOx reduction capabilities across the full range of boiler configurations, solid fuels, and combustion firing patterns. Rugged construction provides superior mechanical reliability and operation.

Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) Systems - B&W’s post-combustion SCR systems are installed on nearly 33,000 MW of generating capacity, including both new boiler installations and retrofit applications. Customized designs provide a comprehensive and integrated SCR package that considers reactor design, flue work, catalyst type and cleaning, ash management, temperature control, ammonia injection, mixer design, control systems, and balance of plant equipment.

SO2 Control

Spray Dryer Absorber Systems - are licensed by B&W from GEA Process Engineering A/S for the GEA Niro spray dryer absorption (SDA) process. Our customers benefit from high SO2 removal efficiencies, high system availability, low capital costs, and low operation and maintenance costs, as well as the inherent capture of oxidized mercury.

Wet Flue Gas Desulfurization Systemsare B&W’s solution to achieving high SO2 and HCl removal and system availability on boilers burning fuels containing any sulfur level. A variety of configurations are available to meet plant requirements.

Our limestone forced oxidation process improves scrubber operation while producing a marketable gypsum byproduct with low waste disposal requirements.

Dry sorbent injection (DSI) systems - provide a low-cost solution to capture acid gases, either separately or combined. When used solely for SO2 control, DSI systems are ideal for smaller coal-fired boilers (typically less than 300 MW), biomass boilers and industrial applications. On larger units, DSI systems also can be used for HCI or SO3 control when combined with other air emissions control technologies.

B&W BREF Wet FGD Scrubbers Solution
Wet Flue Gas Desulfurization (FGD) System

Particulate Matter Control

Fabric Filters - B&W provides cost-effective control of particulate emissions and opacity with our proven pulse jet fabric filter technologies. Integrating fabric filters with our sorbent injection and FGD technologies provides high removal efficiencies of air pollutants in a variety of applications.

We have provided some of the largest fabric filters in the world. Innovative design features such as long bag technology, integral gas and dust distribution devices, as well as on-line maintenance capability provide benefits of increased reliability while achieving lower emissions.

Dry Electrostatic Precipitators - B&W’s particulate control experience began with the first electrostatic precipitator (ESP) installation in the U.S. in 1907. Our dry ESP combines the advantages of maximum collection efficiency and low operating and maintenance costs with extensive application experience.

Wet Electrostatic PrecipitatorsAs a final filter, B&W’s wet ESP provides the lowest overall emissions of fine particulate and acid mist. Our wet ESP system utilizes both intermittent and continuous washing for efficient cleaning. We provide a robust all-alloy wet ESP design and are experienced with proper material selection. System benefits include low operating and maintenance costs, and a flexible, stand-alone design that can be integrated with other pollution control devices.