Honors Gallery

Basic immobilized amine sorbent (BIAS) for CO2 capture

Award: Excellence in Technology Transfer

Year: 2011

Award Type:

Region: Mid-Atlantic

National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) - Morgantown, WV

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is considered to be one of the major greenhouse gases responsible for global warming; consequently, it is critical to control the emission of CO2 into the Earth’s atmosphere. The NETL BIAS Process utilizes low-cost, regenerable, solid CO2 sorbents in large-scale fossil fuel-burning power plants. The process entails the novel steps of treating an amine compound to make it more selective and reactive toward CO2; depositing the amine onto a porous solid support to formulate the sorbent; utilizing the sorbent to selectively react with CO2 to extract it from the flue gas; and regenerating the sorbent by heating it to release the CO2 for storage, thereby refreshing the sorbent for reuse.

Project Leader McMahan Gray is the primary inventor of this patented technology. He has developed contacts with organizations to which the technology has been transferred, such as the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) and ADA Environmental Solutions (ADA-ES). Mr. Gray has also transferred the technology to potential marketers of the porous solid support, such as Fuji Silysia Chemical, Ltd., and PQ, Inc. Henry Pennline, Research Group Leader for the CO2 Capture Group, assisted Mr. Gray at numerous meetings in explaining how the BIAS Process technology fits within DOE/NETL’s Carbon Capture Program. Additionally, Mr. Pennline authored a technology transfer solicitation focusing on potential collaboration efforts and NETL patents/patent applications related to gaseous-component capture technologies, including the BIAS Process, and is coordinating the resulting CRADA and licensing efforts.

As a result of the technology transfer efforts, various parties are now ready to adopt the BIAS Process technology for capturing CO2 from power plants and are developing commercial applications. Pressure Chemicals Company has recently manufactured large batches of the sorbent for pilot-plant testing, and ADA-ES has successfully run this sorbent on a pilot-plant scale. TVA has tested the technology and is interested in using it in power plants. Industrial collaborators of the technology, such as Fuji Silysia and PQ, Inc. for the porous solid support, Pressure Chemicals Company for the bulk sorbent manufacture, and ADA-ES for actual environmental applications, are eager to commercialize the BIAS Process. Also, a Memorandum of Understanding has been signed with NASA to investigate the technology for controlling CO2 levels in enclosed habitats in space.