Limestone-based Industrial Carbon Capture Technology @ IRL, New Zealand
The process is designed to capture carbon dioxide from coal fired power stations and other industries that emit significant amounts of the greenhouse gas. IRL has been awarded $350,000 over three years by the Foundation for Research Science and Technology to further develop its technology.
The lime cycling process uses limestone, a relatively abundant and inexpensive material. It is heated to around 900 degrees centigrade to become lime, which is a very effective material for absorbing carbon dioxide.
When post-combustion flue gas is passed through the lime in a fluidised bed, the CO2 is captured. The process is then reversed to transform the lime back into limestone, which is then used again to capture more CO2.
The 95 per cent pure CO2 that is produced can be compressed to about 3% of its original volume and can then be stored efficiently or used in another industrial process. This process has been known for many years but until now it has not been efficient enough to be considered commercially applicable.
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