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Comment Separation Processes

Mixed-salt processes target lower-cost CO2 capture

By Scott Jenkins |

A mixed-salt process (MSP) designed to reduce the costs and increase the energy efficiency of removing carbon dioxide from post-combustion fluegas is advancing in two related projects. In the first, a 10-MW engineering-scale demonstration plant for the MSP is under construction at the University of Illinois’ (Urbana-Champaign; www.illinois.edu) Abbott Power Plant. In the second, researchers are conducting bench-scale development and testing of a new solvent formulation for the MSP that is designed to further improve the process economics. MSP emerged from earlier work by SRI International (Menlo Park, Calif.; www.sri.com) that investigated chilled ammonia as a solvent for CO2 capture (Chem. Eng., July 2013, p. 11). The MSP, which was licensed to Baker Hughes (Houston; www.bakerhughes.com) in 2021, uses a non-degradable solvent based on inexpensive K2CO3 and NH3 solutions to remove CO2 from power plant exhaust gas. The National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL; Morgantown, W.Va.; www.netl.doe.gov), which is providing cost-shared funding for the two projects, notes that in the MSP chemistry, NH3 plays a dual role as a catalyst and as an absorbent, due to its high mobility and reactivity with CO2. “By operating absorbers near…
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