About CCS

CO2 capture/separation technologies

Five main technologies exist for separating carbon dioxide from a gas stream:

Solvent absorption involves a cyclical process in which carbon dioxide is absorbed from a gas stream directed into a liquid, typically an amine. The gas stream, with most of the carbon dioxide removed, is then emitted to the atmosphere. The liquid is processed to remove the carbon dioxide, which is then compressed for storage.  The resulting carbon-dioxide-free liquid is used again for absorption and the process continues. This technique is fairly widely used in a range of applications, but it needs a large amount of power to regenerate the solvent.

Solvent Absorption

Membranes, made of polymers or ceramics, can be used to effectively sieve out carbon dioxide from gas streams. The membrane material is specifically designed to preferentially separate the molecules in the mixture. A range of configurations exists either simply as gas separation devices or incorporating liquid absorption stages. This process has not yet been applied on a large scale and there are challenges related to the composition and temperature of the flue gases.

Membrane

Adsorption is based on a cyclical process in which carbon dioxide is adsorbed from a gas stream on to the surface of a solid, typically a mineral zeolite. The gas stream, with most of the carbon dioxide removed, is then emitted to the atmosphere. The solid is then purified in stages using differences in either pressure or temperature to remove the carbon dioxide and compress it for storage.

Adsorption

Cryogenic techniques use low temperatures to cool, condense and purify carbon dioxide from gas streams. They have been applied to moderately concentrated carbon-dioxide streams.

Low temp

Chemical looping is similar in some ways to the oxyfiring approach in that, before combustion, oxygen is removed from air by reacting with metal particles in a fluidised bed to form metal oxides. This captured oxygen in the form of metal oxide is then contacted with the fuel, such as natural gas, in a separate fluidised bed, effectively burning the fuel and producing carbon dioxide and water.

Chemical Looping

 

 
Application
 
Natural gas separation
Post-combustion
Pre-combustion
Oxyfiring
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Solvent absorption
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Membranes
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Adsorption
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Cryogenics / hydrates
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Chemical looping
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Capture separation technologies and their relevance to various applications (after CO2CRC, 2004).

 


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