The Impact of Air Ingress on Cost of CO2 Capture in Cement Plants

A study funded by the DOE explores how false air ingress in cement production dilutes CO2 emissions and affects the cost-effectiveness of membrane-based carbon capture technologies.

The Impact of Air Ingress on Cost of CO2 Capture in Cement Plants
Photo by Martin Sepion / Unsplash

The industrial sector, with cement production as a notable contributor, plays a significant role in global CO2 emissions. Addressing these emissions is crucial for achieving industrial decarbonization. A recent study funded by the United States Department of Energy (DOE) and published in ScienceDirect focuses on the impact of false air ingress—a common occurrence in cement production that dilutes kiln CO2 emissions—on the cost and efficiency of membrane-based carbon capture technologies.

The study integrates correlations for ideal countercurrent membrane separation and a compression and purification unit (CPU) model to estimate the performance of a two-stage membrane system. It evaluates a wide range of membrane material performances, with permeance from 1,000 to 10,000 GPU and CO2:N2 selectivity from 25 to 200, covering current commercial membranes to future potential advancements.

Key findings suggest that increasing CO2:N2 selectivity significantly reduces cost up to a selectivity of 60, beyond which improvements have a marginal impact. The study also reveals that the cost of CO2 captured (COC) for membrane-based systems can be comparable to solvent-based systems when false air ingress is not considered. However, including false air ingress in the analysis significantly increases the COC for membrane-based systems by 64–111%, highlighting the need for future research and development to address this challenge in system design.

This study underscores the importance of considering false air ingress in the techno-economic analyses of membrane-based carbon capture from cement plants, aiming to develop more cost-effective solutions for industrial decarbonization.

Source: ScienceDirect