Abstract Carbon capture for coal-fired power plant (PP) draws an increasing attention due to the significant impact of CO2 emissions on global climate change. The dry carbonate process (DCP) has many advantages over the conventional calcium cycle (CaL) for CO2 capture in low temperature flue gas, and solar energy can be used to provide the heat for sorbent regeneration, thus replacing the low pressure steam extraction from turbine. However, the existing researches have not improved the DCP operation, the conventional equipment arrangement not only increases the heat loss, but also increases the investment cost. The exhaust gas of a 600MW PP was used as the case in this paper, and a novel scheme directly heating sorbent in trough solar collector was proposed by removing the regenerator and reboiler from DCP, that is, the sorbent regeneration was carried out in the collector pipe. It not only reduces the capital and operation cost, but also decouples the DCP from PP and eliminates the dependence of DCP on steam cycle, further improves the flexibility of DCP operation and significantly increases the technical and economic advantages. EBSILON professional and Aspen Plus were selected to establish the model of PP and novel scheme, and improved the performance and annual power generation during flexible operation of this scheme. It provides enough time for equipment maintenance and alleviates the impact of transient climate conditions. The results will provide useful guidance for the application of novel solar energy-DCP system.