Solar thermochemical CO2 capture via calcium-oxide looping

Partner institutions:
Funding sources:

This project seeks a major advancement of the solar thermochemical CO2 capture technology via the calcination/carbonation reaction pair as shown in Fig. 1. The calcination reaction is the solar, endothermic step that proceeds at temperatures above 1200 K. The carbonation reaction is the non-solar, exothermic step that proceeds at temperatures below 600 K.

CO2 capture cycle

Fig. 1. CO2 capture cycle based calcination–carbonation looping.

Solar reactor prototype

Fig. 2. 1-kW solar reactor prototype for CO2 capture via calcination–carbonation looping.

A 1 kW reactor to study the cycle is under development and is shown in Fig. 2. It is a beam up reactor in which an annular reaction zone containing a packed bed of particles is indirectly irradiated by concentrated solar energy entering through a windowless aperture into a cavity. Gases flow into the reactor through inlets into a plenum before passing through a distributor plate into the reaction zone. The gases flow through the reaction zone and exit the reactor through outlets at the top. The reactor is designed for batch operation, where gas species are changed and solar input is switched on and off to drive each reaction. Major research efforts in this project include development of a transient heat and mass transfer model of the reactor and design, construction, and experiments using the reactor prototype.


  1. L. Matthews and W. Lipiński. Thermodynamic analysis of solar thermochemical CO2 capture via carbonation/calcination cycle with heat recovery. Energy, 45:900–907, 2012.

    DOI: 10.1016/

  2. L. Reich, L. Yue, R. Bader, and W. Lipiński. Towards solar thermochemical carbon dioxide capture via calcium oxide looping: A review. Aerosol and Air Quality Research, 14:500–514, 2014.

    DOI: 10.4209/aaqr.2013.05.0169

Updated:  14 August 2017/ Responsible Officer:  STG Leader/ Page Contact:  STG Webmaster