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Type: Journal article
Title: Solar-driven alumina calcination for CO₂ mitigation and improved product quality
Other Titles: Solar-driven alumina calcination for CO(2) mitigation and improved product quality
Author: Davis, D.
Müller, F.
Saw, W.
Steinfeld, A.
Nathan, G.
Citation: Green Chemistry, 2017; 19(13):2992-3005
Publisher: Royal Society of Chemistry
Issue Date: 2017
ISSN: 1463-9262
Statement of
Dominic Davis, Fabian Müller, Woei L. Saw, Aldo Steinfeld and Graham J. Nathan
Abstract: We report on the first-of-a-kind experimental demonstration of the calcination of alumina with concentrated solar thermal (CST) radiation at radiative fluxes up to 2190 suns using a 5 kW novel solar transport reactor. Aluminium hydroxide was calcined at nominal reactor temperatures over the range 1160–1550 K to yield chemical conversions of up to 95.8% for nominal residence times of approximately 3 s. Solar energy conversion efficiencies of up to 20.4% were achieved. The mean pore diameter and specific surface area of the solar-generated alumina with the greatest chemical conversion were 5.8 nm and 132.7 m² g⁻¹, respectively, which are higher values than are typical for industrial alumina production. In addition, the product is dominated by the γ-phase, which is desirable for the downstream processing to aluminium. This suggests that CST can improve the quality of alumina over existing fossil fuel based processes though a combination of a high heating rate and avoided contamination by combustion products. Furthermore, the solar-driven process has the potential to avoid the discharge of combustion-derived CO₂ emissions for the calcination stage of the conventional Bayer process, which is typically 165 kg-CO₂ per tonne-alumina.
Description: Accepted 10th May 2017
Rights: This journal is © The Royal Society of Chemistry 2017. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported Licence.
DOI: 10.1039/C7GC00585G
Grant ID: 731287
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