Carbonic Anhydrase Enhanced Carbon Capture: Kinetic Measurements and Pilot Plant Trials

Arne Gladis, Maria Gundersen Deslauriers, Philip Loldrup Fosbøl, John Woodley, Nicolas von Solms

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In this study the effect of carbonic anhydrase addition on the absorption of CO2 was investigated in a wetted wall column apparatus. Four different solvents: MEA (a primary amine), AMP (a sterically hindered primary amine), MDEA (a tertiary amine) and K2CO3 a carbonate salt solution were tested in concentrations from 5 to 50 wt%. Necessary mass transfer parameters such as liquid side mass transfer coefficient and solvent and enzyme reaction rates were determined in a temperature range from 298 to 328 K and benchmarked to a 30 wt% MEA solution.
The study reveals that the addition of the enzyme carbonic anhydrase (CA) dramatically increases the liquid side mass transfer coefficient for 30 wt% MDEA and 15 wt% K2CO3. 30 wt% AMP has a moderate increase whereas 30 wt% MEA was unchanged. The results confirm that bicarbonate forming solvent which do not produce carbamate benefit from CA. The results reveal the impact of temperature in relation to CA. A temperature increase resulted in lower liquid side mass transfer rate for 30 wt% MDEA and 15 wt% K2CO3 but in higher rate for 30 wt% AMP. The overall first order enzyme reaction rate (s-1) was linearly dependent on enzyme concentration for 30 wt% MDEA and 15 wt% K2CO3 at 313 K. The derived enzymatic reaction rate constant kenz (m3 kg-1 s-1) for 15 wt% K2CO3 at 313 K was about 9 times higher than for 30 wt% MDEA and 10 times higher than for 30 wt% AMP. Temperature and concentration did not observably influence the enzymatic rate constant in the concentration range of 5 to 15 wt% K2CO3. The higher solvent concentration only led to a slightly higher reaction rate. A solution with 20 wt% K2CO3 had almost 3 times higher enzyme reaction rate compared to 15 wt% at 298 K and increased with temperature to almost 5 times faster at 328 K. The enzymatic reaction rate for MDEA decreased with both temperature and solvent concentration from 15 to 30 wt%. An increase to 50 wt% resulted in a decrease in reaction rate due to less water present.
Pilot plant campaigns were carried out for different solvents and conditions and the results were successfully modelled using intrinsic data obtained from the wetted-wall column experiments
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2016
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Event2016 AIChE Annual Meeting - Hotel Nikko San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: 13 Nov 201619 Nov 2016


Conference2016 AIChE Annual Meeting
LocationHotel Nikko San Francisco
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco, CA
Internet address


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