Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) is an emerging method of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of power plants. In a process called ‘scrubbing’, the carbon dioxide emissions can be absorbed into chemical solvents consisting of amines or carbonates. Scrubbing is a well-established method of carbon capture, with virtually every commercial CO2 capture plant in operation using this process. In the process, the first step is the removal of impurities from the flue gas, such as hydrocarbons and oxides of both nitrogen and sulfur (NOx and SOx). Next the purified gas is passed through an absorption column filled with the chemical scrubbing solvent. The solvent reacts with the carbon dioxide and selectively absorbs it from the gas stream. When CO2-rich solvent is heated, the carbon dioxide is released as a nearly pure gas.
By Gasmet Technologies Oy based in Helsinki, FINLAND.
The act of capturing and storing CO2 produced from large scale combustion plants such as power stations is becoming more and more favourable and feasible. One of the most common post-combustion CO2 capture methods is by absorption. The absorption plant can be added on to the existing combustion process, with the flue gas first passing through an absorption column where the CO2 reacts with an absorber. Amines of different types are used as the absorber. An amine CO2 capture plant can capture as much as 90% of the CO2 emitted from the power station and so has a real benefit for the environment. Having said this, care needs to be taken to ensure that amine emissions themselves are monitored, managed and prove no extra damage to the environment. Research is on-going to develop new amines or mixtures of amines to reduce emissions. The most common absorber in use in today’s first generation of industrial pilot plants is Monoethanolamine (MEA).
By Protea Limited based in Middlewich, UNITED KINGDOM.
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