Heavy equipment manufacturer Caterpillar is joining a coalition of companies to build an experimental clean-coal power plant in Illinois, US.

The FutureGen Alliance is made up of a public-private partnership to build a 275MW integrated gasification combined-cycle (IGCC) power plant that is designed to be the cleanest coal burning plant in the world.

Caterpillar vice chairman Doug Oberhelman said the FutureGen project will demonstrate carbon capture and sequestration technologies that are absolutely essential for the world to realise reductions in emissions.

The plant will for the first time use technologies for coal gasification, electricity generation, emissions control, CCS and hydrogen production together that to ensure technical and commercial viability.

The US Department of Energy will provide over $1bn in funding to the project, reports the Associated Press.

The other partners for the project include Anglo American, China Huaneng Group, E.ON US, Rio Tinto Energy America, Xstrata Coal and recently joined Exelon.