Falling-Bead Reactor for Carbon Dioxide Separation | SRI International

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SRI's falling-bead reactor

Falling-Bead Reactor for Carbon Dioxide Separation

SRI’s carbon capture system can make economic sense today at facilities that produce and consume carbon dioxide.

Coal-fired power plants and many industrial operations produce carbon dioxide (CO2), a greenhouse gas produced during the combustion of fossil fuels. SRI and ATMI, Inc., an Entegris company, are developing a low-cost, energy-efficient, adsorption-based technology to remove CO2 from flue gas streams. The system uses ATMI’s BrightBlack® precision-engineered carbon adsorbents to selectively capture CO2 from flue gas in a process developed by SRI.  

SRI’s proprietary process uses a single, integrated column combining adsorption and regeneration in one process unit. CO2 is removed from the flue gas by countercurrent contact with ATMI's adsorbent carbon beads as they fall through the adsorption section at the top of the column. The CO2-laden adsorbent is then regenerated at the bottom of the column by direct contact with low-grade steam, heating the carbon and displacing nearly pure CO2, which is then collected for reuse. The adsorbent beads continuously recirculate in the system.

ATMI’s carbons possess a unique combination of exceptionally high capacity for CO2 coupled with low regeneration energy requirements. These adsorbents “pull” the CO2 out of flue gas streams, which are typically 3 to 15 percent CO2 (depending on the fuel source), and capture it in nanopores only twice the width of the CO2 molecules themselves.

A 40 kWe reactor is currently undergoing testing on a slipstream at a field site. In 2016, Linde LLC will construct a 1 MWe unit for additional testing.

ATMI is a wholly owned subsidiary of Entegris, Inc.

This material is based upon work supported by the Department of Energy under award numbers DE-NT0005578 and DE-FE0013123. This report was prepared as an account of work sponsored by an agency of the United States Government. Neither the United States Government nor any agency thereof, nor any of their employees, makes any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness or any information, apparatus, product, or process disclosed, or represents that its use would not infringe privately owned rights. Reference herein to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the United Stated Government or any agency thereof. The views and opinions of authors expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of the United States Government or any agency thereof.