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Ascent Project
2 - Combined Ca-Cu Chemical Loop

A novel a Calcium-Copper (Ca-Cu) looping cycle will be studied which matches two endothermic-exothermic reaction pairs in the same equipment. The heat needed to drive the endothermic steam-methane reforming reaction is matched with in-situ heat production from the calcium carbonate formation reaction.

The Ca/Cu looping process for H2 production under development in ASCENT project makes use of a Cu/CuO chemical loop to capture the CO2 during the production of H2 by a sorption enhanced reforming (SER) of CHand supply the energy required for the endothermic CaCO3 calcination via a chemical looping process. Currently some of the modelling activities are focused on the definition of the reactor models to simulate this process.

Two one-dimensional pseudo-homogeneous models are now available to describe this process: one solved in Delphi developed at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) and one solved in Matlab developed at the Instituto Nacional del Carbón (INCAR) of Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC) in Oviedo. The two models have been compared with experimental results and have been compared with each other. Both models are able to capture the most important phenomena occurring during the Ca/Cu cycle. These two models will be used to design the experimental campaign in the available setups for the proof of concept at in the TU/e laboratory.

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Links to the scientific papers produced in ASCENT project:

  1. Experimental study of the application of a NiONiAl2O4 catalyst and a CaO-based synthetic sorbent on the Sorption Enhanced Reforming process
  2. CaCO3 calcination by the simultaneous reduction of CuO in a Ca/Cu chemical looping process
  3. Performance of a combined CaO-based sorbent and catalyst on H2 production, via sorption enhanced methane steam reforming
  4. Evaluation of process variables on the performance of Sorption Enhanced Methane Reforming
  5. Investigation of a fixed-bed reactor for the calcination of CaCO3 by the simultaneous reduction of CuO with a fuel gas
  6. Optimized design and operation strategy of a Ca-Cu chemical looping
  7. Conceptual design of a Ca-Cu chemical looping process for hydrogen production in integrated steelworks
High pressure Ca/Cu proof-of-concept reactor at TU/e Laboratory Experimental set up built at INCAR-CSIC Low pressure packed bed reactor setup at TU/e laboratory


The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Union Seventh Framework Programme  FP7 under grant agreement n° 608512