CO2 capture and utilisation via aqueous mineral carbonation

The Seminar will be held by Prof. Eric Kennedy (University of Newcastle). Mineral carbonation has the potential to store billions of tonnes of CO2 safely and permanently. The purpose of our research is to investigate the potential of transforming CO2 into stable solid carbonates. The presented study is part of a major research project being conducted at the University of Newcastle to investigate mineral carbonation from laboratory to pilot scale. A research pilot plant is currently in operation at the University of Newcastle, where a 30 L batch reactor commenced operation in 2016. One important aim of this work is to compare pilot plant results to laboratory data obtained under similar reaction conditions. CO2 can be captured from gas streams by use of solutions augmented with reactive alkaline minerals. These minerals dissolve in contact with the CO2-saturated solution which, in the case of heat-activated serpentine, yield aqueous magnesium bicarbonate. Decarbonation, or the controlled removal of CO2 from these resultant aqueous solutions, increases pH engendering supersaturation sufficient for precipitation of magnesium carbonates. The precipitation of magnesium carbonates in effect sequesters the captured gaseous CO2 in solid mineral form. This staged pathway to mineralisation of CO2 emissions thus relies on the operation of separate but linked mineral dissolution and precipitation process units. The overall process, configured to incorporate recovery or recycling of liquid and gas streams, can be operated under relatively mild conditions.


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