Five New Carbon Capture Research Projects – Novel CCS Ideas

This entry was posted by Saturday, 16 January, 2010
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Here are five interesting carbon capture research projects mentioned at Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E) (US department of energy): (Source page)

CO2 Capture with Enzyme Synthetic Analogue

United Technologies Research Center (UTRC) (East Hartford, CT) will develop membrane technology for separating CO2 from flue gas streams using synthetic forms of carbonic anhydrase, (CA), which natural systems use to manage CO2.

Pilot Scale Testing of Carbon Negative, Product Flexible Syngas Chemical Looping

A novel process known as Syngas Chemical Looping (SCL), in which coal and biomass are converted to electricity and CO2 is efficiently captured, has been successfully demonstrated on a laboratory scale. In this project, the SCL process, will be scaled up to a 250 kW pilot plant for a planned demonstration at the National Carbon Capture Center.

Carbon Nanotube Membranes for Energy-Efficient Carbon Sequestration

Porifera, Inc., (Hayward, CA) Inc will lead a team including the University of California, Berkeley and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory that will integrate carbon nanotubes with polymer membranes to increase the flux of CO2 capture membranes by up to 100x. Physical and chemical modifications to the carbon nanotubes will be used to increase the selectivity of the membrane for CO2.

Energy Efficient Capture of CO2 from Coal Flue Gas

Nalco Company (Naperville, IL) and will partner with Argonne National Laboratory and the Western Research Institute have partnered to develop an electrochemical process for CO2 capture. A technique known as Resin-Wafer Electrodeionization (RW-EDI) leverages control of pH to adsorb and desorb CO2 from flue gas without the need for heating or a vacuum. The objective is to drastically reduce the current parasitic power loss of 30% that is currently associated with carbon capture from flue gas.

Electric Field Swing Adsorption for Carbon Capture Applications

Scientists at Lehigh University (Bethlehem, PA) will seek to develop a novel carbon capture technique based upon Electric Field Swing Adsorption (EFSA), is a technique that takes advantage of the ability of electric fields to change the interaction of molecules on a surface. In this project, EFSA will be applied to high surface area conductive solid carbon sorbents for the adsorption and desorption of CO2 across a wide range of process conditions. The EFSA technique has the potential for drastically reduced parasitic load compared with current carbon capture methodologies.

Ok, some of the core themes for the above five:
1. Biomimicry
2. More efficient membranes
3. Using electrochemical processes to make CO2 capture more efficient
4. Using electric fields to modify material properties resulting in better adsorption and desorption.

Interesting. The key question is of course, when will these be anywhere near commercially viable, because most of these innovative ideas appear to be pretty much in the lab stages.

4 Responses to “Five New Carbon Capture Research Projects – Novel CCS Ideas”

  1. Mia Franceska

    One of the big problems in geothermal energy and carbon capture and sequestration is that of economics.

    There has to be some kind of subsidy on Geothermal side or some tax on Carbon.

    Traditionally geothermal energy systems pump water down under to geologic hot spots. The water soaks up heat emanating from Earth’s core and brings it back to the surface. The hot water is then used to generate electricity.

    High-pressure, high-temperature carbon dioxide is a more efficient fluid than water for capturing heat from geothermal systems.

    This method seems to solve two problems. But as pointed out by Narsi, this novel method is still on the drawing table and will take some time to get into pilot stage.

  2. Manohar

    ” When will these be commercially viable.. ”
    The Syngas Chemical Looping , in which coal and biomass are converted to electricity and CO2 is efficiently captured.
    As this methodology is meant for new projects, it can be expected that these will be among the first few to become commercially viable.

    The efficiency has been already successfully demonstrated on a laboratory scale.

    The SCL process, will be scaled up to a 250 kW pilot plant for a planned demonstration at the National Carbon Capture Center.

    So, I guess SCL will be the first to hit the road.

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