A team of researchers from Poland and the Czech Republic is going to optimize a new technology to capture carbon dioxide from exhaust gases discharged into the atmosphere. The National Science Centre has allocated over 1.7 million PLN from the OPUS + LAP program for the research.
Since climate change resulting from global warming is one of the grandest challenges facing modern science, reducing greenhouse gas (mainly carbon dioxide) emissions is of fundamental significance – says the project manager, Professor Andrzej Górak, from the Faculty of Process and Environmental Engineering at Lodz University of Technology. – Research planned as part of the shared task will be carried out in RPB (Rotating Packed Bed) reactors that, thanks to making use of centrifugal force, make it possible to achieve higher effectiveness of the absorption process.
What makes the project innovative? As the researchers say, such reactors are now very rarely used in industry. So far, no scientific “methodology” of designing such devices has been developed. CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) numerical process design methods will be developed as part of the project and validated by project partners in particular areas of the RPB reactor.
As the project manager, Professor Andrzej Górak describes the roles of partners in the following way:
Researchers from Lodz University of Technology will be responsible for three-dimensional modeling and manufacturing of the structure of rotor internals, as well as carrying out carbon dioxide absorption processes in amine solutions. Czech researchers from Brno University of Technology are going to conduct research on fluid and gas distribution in an RPB absorber using ultra-fast stop-motion cameras, which will make it possible to optimize different construction solutions of the fluid inlet and outlet, to and from the rotor internals.
The final result of the project “A complex description of absorption in RPB apparatus with the use of three-dimensional computational fluid mechanics, visual research and experimental analysis of the mass transfer process” will be know-how involving all the stages of absorption processes taking place in RPB reactors. It will be possible to implement it as a multi-purpose tool for modeling and simulations of different types of absorption apparatus with a rotating porous bed.
RPB reactors have a wide range of potential applications. Apart from capturing carbon dioxide from exhaust gas streams, RPB technology can be utilized in many key purification processes of gas streams used in industry, e.g. regarding benzene, acetone, ammonia, or chlorides.