A predictive thermodynamic model for an aqueous blend of potassium carbonate, piperazine, and monoethanolamine for carbon dioxide capture from flue gas
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The Electrolyte Nonrandom Two-Liquid Activity Coefficient model in Aspen PlusTM 2006.5 was used to develop a rigorous and consistent thermodynamic representation for the base sub-component systems associated with aqueous combinations of K₂CO₃, KHCO₃, MEA, and piperazine (PZ) in a mixed-solvent electrolyte system for the application of CO₂ absorption/stripping from coal fired power plants. We developed a new vapor-liquid equilibrium apparatus to measure CO₂, amine, and H2O vapor pressures at 40 and 60 oC. We found that the volatility of MEA and PZ can be approximated at 50 and 20 ppmv at 40°C for any solvent composition studied in this work, over the CO₂ partial pressure range from 0.01 to 0.1 kPa. Very few solvent compositions exhibited a greater differential capacity than 7 m MEA at 60°C; specifically 11 m MEA, 3.5 m MEA + 3.6 m PZ, 7 m MEA + 2 m PZ, 7 m MEA + 3.6 m PZ, and 5 m K+ + 7 m MEA + 3.6 m PZ. Piperazine exhibited a possible maximum differential capacity of 2.21 mole CO₂/kg-H₂O at a concentration of 7.3 m. At the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Inna Kim determined the differential enthalpy of CO₂ absorption for aqueous combinations of K₂CO₃, KHCO₃, MEA, PZ, and CO₂, based on a consistent experimental method developed for MEA, from 40 to 120°C for use in this work. In addition, we developed a consistent method to measure the specific heat capacity for a number of similar solvent combinations. We found that the enthalpy of CO₂ absorption increased with temperature because the apparent partial heat capacity of CO₂ may be considered small. Finally, by using a differential scanning calorimeter, we determined the dissolution temperature for aqueous mixtures of unloaded piperazine, which inferred an effective operating range for solutions of concentrated piperazine, greater than 5 m PZ, over a loading range between 0.25 to 0.45 mole CO₂/2·mol PZ. Through unit cell x-ray diffraction, we were able to identify and characterize the presence of three solid phases (PZ·6H₂O, KHCO₃, and KvPZ(COO)₂) in aqueous mixture combinations of K₂CO₃, KHCO₃, PZ, and CO₂.