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Keywords:

  • CO2 recovery;
  • process intensification;
  • membrane technology;
  • non-dispersive absorption

Abstract

Research on capture and recovery of CO2 has become a critical topic in the development of technological answers to the greenhouse effect. Conventional industrial processes do not fit into the philosophy of process intensification in which a radically new approach should lead to environmentally friendly methods with minimal use of natural resources and production of secondary waste. Conventional processes involve the use of large amounts of toxic organic solvents, such as diethylamine, and large equipment (e.g. absorption columns). Although CO2 recovery began in industrial operation more than fifty years ago and, in spite of the clear potential for intensified processes demonstrated in the scientific literature, there is no real evidence that new processes for CO2 recovery will achieve industrial implementation in the short term. In this perspective, the main limitations of membrane systems based on non-dispersive absorption using porous membranes are outlined, in order to identify the main challenges that still have to be solved to achieve an industrially attractive process for CO2 recovery. Copyright © 2011 Society of Chemical Industry