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2014

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From 1 - 10 / 1026
  • Increased population and increased economic activity have one important thing in common: increased energy demand. More and more, concern is mounting surrounding the broader environmental impact associated with this, and we are forced to consider the harsh reality that societies which systematically abuse and exploit their ecosystems tend not to survive. Historically, once a population had exhausted their local ecosystem, those who could, would relocate to another area, whilst those who could not tended to die out. In our globally connected world, we do not have the option of relocation; therefore it is imperative that we find a way to redress the adverse environmental impact that has historically been associated with anthropogenic economic activity. This work proposes to address one important aspect of this challenge; how to decarbonise power generation in a costeffective and environmentally benign manner. First patented in 1932, amine-based technologies for removing CO2 from the exhaust gases of large industrial processes are a well accepted and mature option. However, their deployment on a scale commensurate with the power generation industry would entail their utilisation on a scale of an entirely different order of magnitude. This step change brings with it two important challenges; the large cost resulting from the capital and ongoing operational cost associated with the deployment of CCS and also the possibility of ancillary environmental concerns resulting from the release of amines and their associated degradation products into the wider environment. This research proposes to solve this problem by using a new class of material, ionic liquids, for solvent based CO2 capture to produce carbon negative electricity - in effect taking CO2 out of the atmosphere and ultimately reversing global warming. Ionic liquids are an exciting new class of materials which, rather than being composed of molecules, are composed of individual anions and cations which interact to define their thermophysical properties. They are almost infinitely tunable as one can in effect design a task specific ionic liquid for a particular property, e.g., to absorb CO2. However, there is an important challenge associated with this; the sheer size of the potential design space. At the time of writing, there are approximately 109 potential combinations on anion and cation - far too many for design by experiment or heuristic. Thus, this research proposes to tackle this problem by performing this material design in a computational environment using a process performance index. In other words, the development and incorporation of a new theory for designing task specific ionic liquids in dynamic non-equilibrium models of a CO2 capture process and proposing new ionic liquids based on how they affect the efficiency of the power plant to which these processes are attached. The success criteria of this project are the development of a new, environmentally benign ionic liquids based CO2 capture process which reduces the cost of capture by approximately 40% in comparison with the current benchmark technology. Vital to the success of this work is the cutting edge collaboration between experimental and theoretical research groups in the Department of Chemical Engineering and the Centre for Environmental Policy at Imperial College London in addition to leading research groups in the Join BioEnergy Institute in San Francisco, USA. Important outputs of this work will be new technologies for the design of task specific ionic liquids in addition to designs operational strategies for ionic liquids based CO2 capture from large fixed point emission sources. Grant number: UKCCSRC-C2-199.

  • This poster on the UKCCSRC Call 2 project, Measurement of water solubility limits of CO2 mixtures to underpin the safe pipeline transportation of CO2, was presented at the Cardiff Biannual, 10.09.14. Grant number: UKCCSRC-C2-185.

  • This poster on the UKCCSRC Call 2 project, Multiscale characterization of CO2 storage in the United Kingdom, was presented at the Cranfield Biannual, 21.04.15. Grant number: UKCCSRC-C2-197.

  • This poster on the UKCCSRC Call 2 project Novel reductive rejuvenation approaches for degraded amine solutions from PCC in power plants was presented at the CSLF Call project poster reception, London, 27.06.16. Grant number: UKCCSRC-C2-189. Aqueous amine scrubbing is currently considered to be the best available technology of carbon capture for both pulverised fuel and natural gas power plants. A major problem is the thermo-oxidative degradation of chemical amine solvents used, leading to a range of operational problems and the generation of large quantities of hazardous aqueous waste. However, no existing technologies are able to effectively deal with these problems particularly the handling of the toxic waste solvent streams. The conversion of the degraded amines back to usable solvents or saleable products has been regarded as a novel effective way for cost reduction.

  • This poster on the UKCCSRC Call 2 project Measurement of Water Solubility Limits of CO2 Mixtures to Underpin the Safe Pipeline Transportation of CO2 was presented at the CSLF Call project poster reception, London, 27.06.16. Grant number: UKCCSRC-C2-185. Monitoring the composition of mixtures which are of relevance to Carbon Capture and Storage pipelines is of high importance for the safe transportation of CO2 during the CCS process. Captured CO2 will contain varying amounts of impurities such as N2, H2, O2 and H2O. These are components which greatly affect the phase behaviour of the captured CO2. Being able to quantifiably monitor the composition and components of CCS-relevant mixtures is key for (i) safety; (ii) determining standard operating conditions. This project, incorporating several novel techniques, have been used to measure: • The phase behaviour and thermodynamic properties of CO2 containing varying amounts of impurities in order to improve or validate existing models of CCS relevant gas mixtures. • The solubility of water in impure CO2 CCS mixtures.

  • Although the terrestrial mantle comprises ~80 vol.% of our planet, its compositional architecture is not well understood despite the importance such knowledge holds for constraining Earth's thermal and chemical evolution over ~4.5 billion years of geological time. Our lack of detailed insight into the mantle stems in part from the fact that it is rarely exposed at our planets surface, making direct observation and study difficult. It is clear from recent study, however, that the mantle cannot be assumed to be compositionally homogenous or static over geological time. Peridotites from the ocean basins (abyssal peridotites) and from ophiolites preserve evidence for a convecting upper mantle that is chemically and isotopically heterogeneous at regional (100's km) and small (cm-to-m) scales. Complex formation and alteration upper mantle histories involving processes of melt-depletion, refertilisation (whereby originally refractory residues such as harzburgites become lherzolites again via melt addition) and melt-rock reaction have been held responsible, but the causes, timing and distribution of such processes are poorly resolved. Ophiolites, which represent partially-to-wholly preserved slivers of obducted oceanic mantle, are particularly valuable resources for assessing the timing, causes and extent of mantle heterogeneity, as they allow field-based observation to be coupled with geochemical investigation on otherwise inaccessible mantle material. Furthermore, ophiolites preserve a range of oceanic mantle lithologies (e.g., harzburgites, lherzolite and dunite) and such variation allows detailed assessment of the distribution and relative timing of events acting upon the mantle that is preserved. A distinctive attribute of some ophiolites, which contrasts with abyssal peridotites, is the presence of podiform chromitite seams, typically in the region of the petrological Moho, which are often associated with Platinum-group element mineralization. The timing and genesis of ophiolite podiform chromitites is controversial, but it has been suggested that they represent zones of focused melt channeling in supra-subduction zone settings. The Shetland (UK) and Leka (Norway) supra-subduction zone ophiolites comprise oceanic lithosphere separated at ~620 Ma on either side of a mid-ocean ridge and subsequently obducted over continental crust ~130 Ma later, each on opposite sides of the northern Iapetus Ocean. A pilot study already carried out on the Shetland ophiolite by the PI and Project Partner reveals that it preserves evidence for a complex sequence of melt depletion, percolation and refertilisation events that occurred over the lifetime of the Iapetus mantle. The critical observation made from the pilot dataset is that later mantle events only partially overprint the compositional heterogeneities developed from earlier mantle processes and that the relatively high degrees of partial melting associated with the supra-subduction zone are very effective at generating such heterogeneity. This important observation will be tested in the proposed research by 1) extending the Shetland study to greater levels of detail; 2) inclusion of a comparative study of carefully selected samples from the well-preserved Leka ophiolite; 3) drawing comparisons with existing geochemical and isotopic datasets from ophiolites that formed in other (e.g., mid-ocean ridge) tectonic settings. In order to achieve this, the powerful combination of the Re-Os isotopic system and highly-siderophile element (Os, Ir, Ru, Rh, Pt, Pd, Re, Au) abundance measurements will be utilised to discriminate between the processes responsible for generating mantle heterogeneities such as melt depletion, refertilisation and melt-rock reaction. Thus, profound insight will be gained into the chemical evolution of a piece of oceanic mantle and the development of compositional heterogeneity therein, from outcrop to oceanic plate scales, over much of the lifetime of the Iapetus Ocean.

  • This dataset comprises unprocessed microprobe analyses (WDS) of 10-15 natural zeolite samples, using the method of Campbell et al. (2016), and relating to the hypothesis of Campbell et al. (2012). Minerals analysed include stilbite, chabazite, phillipsite and harmotome. Key localities include the Western USA (oregon) and Europe (Germany and Scotland). Published papers and abstracts.

  • The data is in the form of excel spreadsheets and a word document of supplementary material. Publications: Foster, W.J., Danise, S., Sedlacek, A., Price, G.D., Hips, K. and Twitchett, R.J. 2015. Environmental controls on the post-Permian recovery of benthic, tropical marine ecosystems in western Palaeotethys (Aggtelek Karst, Hungary). Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 440, 374-394 Danise, S., Twitchett, R.J., Little, C.T.S. 2015. Environmental controls on Jurassic marine ecosystems during global warming. Geology, 43, 263–266; DOI:10.1130/G36390.1 Danise, S., Twitchett, R.J., Matts, K. 2014. Ecological succession of a Jurassic shallow-water ichthyosaur fall. Nature Communications, 5, 4789. DOI:10.1038/ncomms5789 Foster, W.J., Twitchett, R.J. 2014. Functional diversity of marine ecosystems after the Late Permian mass extinction event. Nature Geoscience, 7, 233-238. doi:10.1038/NGEO2079 Danise, S., Twitchett, R.J., Little, C.T.S. & Clémence, M.E. 2013. The impact of global warming and anoxia on marine benthic community dynamics: an example from the Toarcian (Early Jurassic). PLOS ONE, 8, e56255

  • This dataset comprises a series of six .xls workbooks which contain the data auxiliary material for the manuscript "Metrology and Traceability of U-Pb Isotope Dilution Geochronology (EARTHTIME Tracer Calibration Part I)" by Daniel Condon, Blair Schoene, Noah McLean, Samuel Bowring and Randall Parrish, submitted to Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta (June 2014). These data comprise the input measurement data for the EARTHTIME U-Pb Tracer Calibration experiment, the results of which are documented in the manuscript mentioned above. This data set contains isotope ratio data for the manuscript listed above. ts01.xls Amelin and Davis (2006) Pb reference material isotope ratio data ts02.xls CRM 115 U isotope ratio data ts03.xls Gravimetric-Tracer mixture isotope ratio data ts04.xls GDMS elemental concentration data ts05.xls Tracer-blank Pb isotope ratio data ts06.xls U critical mixture isotope ratio data. Link to Published Paper - Metrology and Traceability of U-Pb Isotope Dilution Geochronology (EARTHTIME Tracer Calibration Part I) http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gca.2015.05.026

  • UKCCSRC Call 2 Project C2-189. The data, which was produced as a result of a UK CCSRC Call 2 funded project, consists of the GC-MS characterisation results for the products collected from the rejuvenation tests of degraded amine sorbents from carbon capture and related model degradation compounds. The examined amine-based sorbent samples included one heavily degraded industrial MEA solvent, one degraded solid-supported polyethyleneimine sample and 6 model MEA degradation compounds (N-(2-Hydroxyethyl)-ethylenediamine, glycylglycine, 2-Oxazolidinone, 1-(2-Hydroxyethyl)-2-imidazolidinone, 1-(2-Hydroxyethyl)-imidazole, N-Acetylethanolamine. Novel reductive approaches, which were investigated as a potential means for rejuvenating the degraded amine sorbents and where the samples for characterisation were produced, included catalytic hydrogenation, hydrous pyrolysis and hydropyrolysis with platinum, nickel and molybdenum as the catalysts used. The dataset also contains some preliminary CO2 absorption test results for a degraded MEA solvent before and after rejuvenation with hydrous pyrolysis using a continuous reactor. Full technical details of the research are contained in the final report submitted to UK CCSRC.