Say goodbye to CO2: Prof. Minkee Choi's new adsorbent checks all requirements to capture CO2

Rational Design of Amine-Based Solid Adsorbents for Post-Combustion CO2 Capture
Woosung Choi (ws_choi@kaist.ac.kr)
Advisor: Minkee Choi (mkchoi@kaist.ac.kr)

CO2 capture and storage (CCS) technologies have been investigated as one of important options to control CO2 emissions. In particular, post-combustion CO2 capture has attracted significant attention because the technology can be easily retrofitted into the existing power plants. Chemical adsorption of CO2 using aqueous amine solutions is currently considered as a benchmark technology, but the amine scrubbing has intrinsic limitations because of the potential environmental and health concerns arising from volatile amine loss, corrosion, and the large energy consumption required for sorbent regeneration. To overcome the limitations of liquid sorbents, attention has been given to developing solid adsorbents that are noncorrosive and may reduce the energy consumption required for regeneration. In this respect, a large number of works have been reported on CO2 solid adsorbents. However, most of previous studies have primarily focused on the CO2 uptake, while ignoring many important engineering aspects such as regenerability, long-term stability, material cost and scalability.

In the present work, Woosung Choi (Prof. Minkee Choi´s group) reported the first successful CO2 solid adsorbent that can meet all various requirements for post-combustion CO2 capture. The adsorbent was synthesized by compositing epoxide-functionalized polyethyleneimine with high-porosity silica.
The material showed low heat of adsorption for CO2 (low energy consumption for regeneration) and high chemical stabilities against CO2 /O2-derived degradations. The material was synthesized using only bulk commodity chemicals via simple reactions, and thus the synthesis is highly scalable and cost-effective. The results were highly evaluated by the experts in the field and published in Nature Communications (Nature Communications, 7, 12640