Preparation of CO2 adsorbents and techno-economic analysis for CO2 capture and utilization

  • Yuanting Qiao

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


Adsorption is one promising technology because CO2 adsorbents can provide an opportunity to capture CO2 with lower energy consumption, good stability, non-volatility, etc. Many adsorbents such as carbonaceous adsorbents, microporous organic frameworks (MOFs), amorphous microporous/porous organic polymers (MOPs/POPs) have been proposed to capture CO2. Among them, hypercrosslinked polymers (HCPs) and biochar are very promising for large-scale applications due to their easy preparation, high thermal stability, and good capability of CO2 capture. To improve the capacity of CO2 capture, the introduction of nitrogen-containing groups is one efficient strategy. However, most of the amine-functionalized porous materials are prepared through two steps, but in this work, the amine-functionalized HCPS and biochar were obtained with the one-step method and it showed high CO2 adsorption up to 4.24 mmol/g at 273 K.

Carbon capture and utilisation (CCU) is more attractive as CO2 is a used carbon source to produce chemicals or fuels, which can reduce the cost of the technology. However, CCU also leads to high costs from the sorbents desorption and CO2 utilization. To further improve CCU, the Integrated Carbon Capture Utilization (ICCU) process was proposed, where CO2 captured in sorbents can be directly used without desorption of sorbents and the purification of CO2. Thus, the cost can be further reduced by simplifying the procedures. The comparison between ICCU process and CCU process has also been investigated, thus series results including CO production, CaCO3 consumption, purge production, energy efficiency, the total annual cost (TAC), and the total cost of CO are used to confirm that ICCU is a better choice for further industrial applications. Moreover, the effects of the H2 price on the total cost of CO for both CCU and ICCU processes have also been discussed because the H2 price has the dominant influence on the economic results.

Thesis embargoed until 31 July 2027.
Date of AwardJul 2022
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Queen's University Belfast
SponsorsChina Scholarship Council
SupervisorChunfei Wu (Supervisor) & Beatrice Smyth (Supervisor)


  • CCUS
  • CCS
  • carbon capture
  • carbon utilisation
  • techno-economic analysis

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