Catalysis for CCU: valorisation of CO and CO2 through carbon capture and use
January 2021 – December 2025
In light of the climate challenges by which humankind is currently faced, CO2 capture and conversion has emerged as one of the best ways to proceed and curb the ever-increasing CO2 levels in the atmosphere. In this respect, several conversion techniques are being investigated with electrochemistry leading the pack as being closest to becoming economically competitive. Generally, electrochemical syntheses need fewer steps, produce less waste, provide a cheaper reagent (i.e. water) and require less auxiliaries. Moreover, electrochemical strategies often allow an easier scale-up than non-electrochemical syntheses and can be conducted at ambient conditions while using electricity as driving force for the reaction. Since the electrons are pollution free, the waste can be reduced. By further optimizing the different aspects of the reactor, going from the electrocatalyst to the integration in the final reactor, this program tends to bring us even closer to potential application and replacing current industrial processes. During integration, special attention will be given to the interfaces between the different reactor components in order to reduce the energy losses (Ohmic losses) to a minimum and increase the overall reactor efficiency. By focusing both on the electrocatalyst and the reactor design (interfaces, conditions, flow fields, etc.), it is expected that we can move in front of the current state-of-the art in terms of electrocatalytic activity, selectivity and stability.