Matching Items (4)

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Experimental and Simulation Study on Novel Adsorbents for Carbon Capture, Oxygen Sorption, and Methane Recovery

Description

Global warming resulted from greenhouse gases emission has received widespread attention. Meanwhile, it is required to explore renewable and environmentally friendly energy sources due to the severe pollution of the

Global warming resulted from greenhouse gases emission has received widespread attention. Meanwhile, it is required to explore renewable and environmentally friendly energy sources due to the severe pollution of the environment caused by fossil fuel combustion. In order to realize a substantial adsorption process to resolve the environmental issues, the development of new adsorbents with improved properties has become the most critical issue. This dissertation presents the work of four individual but related studies on systematic characterization and process simulations of novel adsorbents with superior adsorption properties.

A perovskite oxide material, La0.1Sr0.9Co0.9Fe0.1O3-δ (LSCF1991), was investigated first for high-temperature air separation. The oxygen sorption/desorption behavior of LSCF1991 was studied by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) and fixed-bed breakthrough experiments. A parametric study was performed to design and optimize the operating parameters of the high-temperature air separation process by pressure swing adsorption (PSA). The results have shown great potential for applying LSCF1991 to the high-temperature air separation due to its excellent separation performance and low energy requirement.

Research on using nanostructured zeolite NaX (NZ) as adsorbents for CO2 capture was subsequently conducted. The CO2/N2 adsorption characterizations indicated that the NZ samples lead to enhanced adsorption properties compared with the commercial zeolites (MZ). From the two-bed six-step PSA simulation, NZ saved around 30% energy over MZ for CO2 capture and recovery while achieving a higher CO2 purity and productivity.

A unique screening method was developed for efficient evaluation of adsorbents for PSA processes. In the case study, 47 novel adsorbents have been screened for coal bed methane (CBM) recovery. The adsorbents went through scoring-based prescreening, PSA simulation, and optimization. The process performance indicators were correlated with the adsorption selectivity and capacities, which provides new insights for predicting the PSA performance.

A new medium-temperature oxygen sorbent, YBaCo4O7+δ (YBC114), was investigated as an oxygen pumping material to facilitate solar thermochemical fuel production. The oxygen uptake and release attributes of YBC114 were studied by both TGA and a small-scale evacuation test. The study proved that the particle size has a significant effect on the oxygen pumping behavior of YBC114, especially for the uptake kinetics.

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  • 2020

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Adsorption of Perfluoroalkyl Substances from Groundwater Using Pilot and Lab Scale Columns

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Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of man-made chemicals that are detected ubiquitously in the aquatic environment, biota, and humans. Human exposure and adverse health of PFAS through

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of man-made chemicals that are detected ubiquitously in the aquatic environment, biota, and humans. Human exposure and adverse health of PFAS through consuming impacted drinking water is getting regulatory attention. Adsorption using granular activated carbon (GAC) and ion exchange resin (IX) has proved to be efficient in removing PFAS from water. There is a need to study the effectiveness of commercially available sorbents in PFAS removal at the pilot-scale with real PFAS contaminated water, which would aid in efficient full-scale plant design. Additionally, there is also a need to have validated bench-scale testing techniques to aid municipalities and researchers in selecting or comparing adsorbents to remove PFAS. Rapid Small-Scale Column Tests (RSSCTs) are bench-scale testing to assess media performance and operational life to remove trace organics but have not been validated for PFAS. Different design considerations exist for RSSCTs, which rely upon either proportional diffusivity (PD) or constant diffusivity (CD) dimensionless scaling relationships.

This thesis aims to validate the use of RSSCTs to simulate PFAS breakthrough in pilot columns. First, a pilot-scale study using two GACs and an IX was conducted for five months at a wellsite in central Arizona. PFAS adsorption capacity was greatest for a commercial IX, and then two GAC sources exhibited similar performance. Second, RSSCTs scaled using PD or CD relationships, simulated the pilot columns, were designed and performed. For IX and the two types of GAC, the CD–RSSCTs simulated the PFAS breakthrough concentration, shape, and order of C8 to C4 compounds observed pilot columns better than the PD-RSSCTs. Finally, PFAS breakthrough and adsorption capacities for PD- and CD-RSSCTs were performed on multiple groundwaters (GWs) from across Arizona to assess the treatability of PFAS chain length and functional head-group moieties. PFAS breakthrough in GAC and IX was dictated by chain length (C4>C6>C8) and functional group (PFCAs>PFSAs) of the compound. Shorter-chain PFAS broke through earlier than the longer chain, and removal trends were related to the hydrophobicity of PFAS. Overall, single-use IX performed superior to any of the evaluated GACs across a range of water chemistries in Arizona GWs.

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  • 2020

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Zwitterionic poly (arylene ether sulfone) copolymers: membrane applications and fundamentals

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Zwitterionic polymers, due to their supurior capability of electrostatically induced hydration, have been considered as effective functionalities to alleviate bio-fouling of reverse osmosis (RO) membranes. Bulk modification of polysulfone-based matrices

Zwitterionic polymers, due to their supurior capability of electrostatically induced hydration, have been considered as effective functionalities to alleviate bio-fouling of reverse osmosis (RO) membranes. Bulk modification of polysulfone-based matrices to improve hydrophilicity, on the other hand, is favored due to the high membrane performance, processibility, and intrinsic chlorine resistance. Here a novel synthetic method was demonstrated to prepare zwitterionic poly(arylene ether sulfone) (PAES) copolymers, which was blended with native polysulfone (PSf) to fabricate free-standing asymmetric membranes via non-solvent induced phase separation process. Both the porosity of the support layer and surface hydrophilicity increased drastically due to the incorporation of zwitterion functionalities in the rigid polysulfone matrix. The water permeance and antifouling ability of the blend membranes were both remarkably improved to 2.5 Lm−2 h−1 bar−1 and 94% of flux recovery ratio, respectively, while salt rejection remained at a high level (98%) even under the high exposure to chlorine (8,000 ppm•h). Besides the preliminary blended membrane design, for the future membrane property enhancement, this dissertation also focused on polymer structure optimizations via elucidating the fundamentals from two perspectives: 1). Synthetic reaction kinetics and mechanisms on polycondensation of PAES. Interestingly, in combination of experiments and the computational calculations by density functional theory (DFT) methods in this work, only the aryl chlorides (ArCl) monomer follows the classical second-order reaction kinetics of aromatic nucleophilic substitution (SNAr) mechanism, while the kinetics of the aryl fluorides (ArF) reaction fit a third-order rate law. The third order reaction behavior of the ArF monomer is attributed to the activation of the carbon-fluorine bond by two potassium cations (at least one bounded to phenolate), which associate as a strong three-body complex. This complex acts as the predominant reactant during the attack by the nucleophile. 2). Optimized copolymer structures were developed for controlled high molecular weight (Mw ~ 65 kDa) and zwitterionic charge content (0~100 mol%), via off-set stoichiometry during polycondensations, following with thiol-ene click reaction and ring-opening of sultone to introduce the sulfobetaine functional groups. The structure-property-morphology relationships were elucidated for better understanding atomic-level features in the charged polymers for future high-performance desalination applications.

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  • 2019

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Design of Metal-Organic Frameworks for Carbon Capture Applications: Approaches for Adsorptive Separation of CO2/N2 and O2/N2 Mixtures

Description

The large-scale anthropogenic emission of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere leads to many unintended consequences, from rising sea levels to ocean acidification. While a clean energy infrastructure is growing, mid-term

The large-scale anthropogenic emission of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere leads to many unintended consequences, from rising sea levels to ocean acidification. While a clean energy infrastructure is growing, mid-term strategies that are compatible with the current infrastructure should be developed. Carbon capture and storage in fossil-fuel power plants is one way to avoid our current gigaton-scale emission of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. However, for this to be possible, separation techniques are necessary to remove the nitrogen from air before combustion or from the flue gas after combustion. Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) are a relatively new class of porous material that show great promise for adsorptive separation processes. Here, potential mechanisms of O2/N2 separation and CO2/N2 separation are explored.

First, a logical categorization of potential adsorptive separation mechanisms in MOFs is outlined by comparing existing data with previously studied materials. Size-selective adsorptive separation is investigated for both gas systems using molecular simulations. A correlation between size-selective equilibrium adsorptive separation capabilities and pore diameter is established in materials with complex pore distributions. A method of generating mobile extra-framework cations which drastically increase adsorptive selectivity toward nitrogen over oxygen via electrostatic interactions is explored through experiments and simulations. Finally, deposition of redox-active ferrocene molecules into systematically generated defects is shown to be an effective method of increasing selectivity towards oxygen.

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  • 2019