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Keywords:

  • CO2 capture;
  • gas treatment;
  • monoethanolamine

Abstract

The aim of this paper is to review some of the parameters influencing the corrosivity of alkanolamine solvents used for natural gas purification or for CO2 capture. In the light of literature data and of new experimental results, the influences of temperature and of acid gas loading are discussed. These two parameters appear to have a strong impact on corrosion rates of carbon steel, with extrapolated corrosion rates of several tens of mm/year for the highest temperature and acid gas loading condition.

It is then proposed to discuss about similarities and differences between natural gas processing and CO2 capture from flue gas. For both applications, alkanolamine processes are used. Still, differences can be found in operating parameters. The most significant gap concerns the lean amine sections. In acid gas treatment, the regeneration of the solvent is often performed down to zero loading. Under these conditions, an extremely low corrosivity of the lean solvent is expected. On the contrary, CO2 capture from flue gas requires only a partial stripping of the CO2 in the regeneration section, due to energy efficiency reasons. Then, the lean solvent still contains some acid gas, and subsequently a higher corrosivity.

Finally, the general principles for material selection for the different parts of acid gas removal units are discussed, considering both cases of natural gas processing or CO2 capture.