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Title

Effect of Thermal Pretreatment and Nanosilica Addition on Limestone Performance at Calcium-Looping Conditions for Thermochemical Energy Storage of Concentrated Solar Power

AuthorsValverde, J.M.; Barea-López, M.; Perejón, Antonio ; Sánchez-Jiménez, P.E. ; Pérez-Maqueda, Luis A.
Issue Date2017
PublisherAmerican Chemical Society
CitationEnergy and Fuels 31: 4226- 4236 (2017)
AbstractThe share of renewable energies is growing rapidly, partly in response to the urgent need for mitigating CO emissions from fossil fuel power plants. However, cheap and efficient large-scale energy storage technologies are not yet available to allow for a significant penetration of renewable energies into the grid. Recently, a potentially low-cost and efficient thermochemical energy storage (TCES) system has been proposed, based on the integration of the calcium-looping (CaL) process into concentrated solar power plants (CSPs). The CaL process relies on the multicycle carbonation/calcination of CaO, which can be derived from calcination of widely available, cheap, and nontoxic natural limestone (CaCO). This work explores the effect on the multicycle activity of limestone-derived CaO of thermal pretreatment under diverse atmospheres and the addition of nanosilica, which would be expected to hinder CaO grain sintering. Importantly, optimum CaL conditions for CSP energy storage differ radically from those used in the application of the CaL process for CO capture. Thus, calcination should be ideally carried out under low CO partial pressure at moderate temperature (below 750°C), whereas CO concentration and temperature should be high for carbonation in order to maximize thermoelectric efficiency. When limestone is subjected to carbonation/calcination cycles at these conditions, its performance is critically dependent on the type of pretreatment. Our results indicate that the multicycle CaO activity is correlated with the size of the particles and the CaO pore size distribution. Thus, CaO activity is impaired as particle size is increased and/or CaO pore size is decreased. These observations suggest that pore plugging poses a main limitation to the multicycle performance of limestone-derived CaO at the optimum CaL conditions for TCES in CSPs, which is supported by scanning electron microscopy analysis. Strategies to enhance the performance of natural limestone at these conditions should be therefore oriented toward minimizing pore plugging rather than CaO grain sintering, which stands as the main limitation at CaL conditions for CO capture.
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/160100
Identifiersdoi: 10.1021/acs.energyfuels.6b03364
issn: 1520-5029
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