• CO2 capture;
  • ionic liquids;
  • rotating packed bed;
  • modeling

A novel mass-transfer intensified approach for CO2 capture with ionic liquids (ILs) using rotating packed bed (RPB) reactor was presented. This new approach combined the advantages of RPB as a high mass-transfer intensification device for viscous system and IL as a novel, environmentally benign CO2 capture media with high thermal stability and extremely low volatility. Amino-functionalized IL (2-hydroxyethyl)-trimethyl-ammonium (S)−2-pyrrolidinecarboxylic acid salt ([Choline][Pro]) was synthesized to perform experimental examination of CO2 capture by chemical absorption. In RPB, it took only 0.2 s to reach 0.2 mol CO2/mol IL at 293 K, indicating that RPB was kinetically favorable to absorption of CO2 in IL because of its efficient mass-transfer intensification. The effects of operation parameters on CO2 removal efficiency and IL absorbent capacity were studied. In addition, a model based on penetration theory was proposed to explore the mechanism of gas–liquid mass transfer of ILs system in RPB. © 2013 American Institute of Chemical Engineers AIChE J, 59: 2957–2965, 2013