A carbon dioxide (CO2) capture process designed to decarbonise heavy industry will be used for the first time at a large-scale CO2-capture facility operated by Capture-to-Use (CAP2U) – a new joint venture established by cement producer Heidelberg Materials and Linde.
The process, developed by Linde, Heidelberg and BASF is based on BASF’s advanced OASE blue technology – a gas treating solution designed for a range of applications including natural gas, synthesis gas and biogas.
According to BASF, the plant will be the world’s first industrial-scale carbon capture and utilisation (CCU) facility and will capture, purify and liquefy around 70,000 tonnes of CO2 per year.
The CO2 is to be captured from cement production, an industry responsible for around seven percent of global emissions.
Commenting on the partnership, Andreas Northemann, Head of BASF’s global Gas Treatment business, said, “This carbon capture and use unit facility has the potential to become a showcase project in a hard-to-abate sector.”
“We are proud to work with Linde and Heidelberg Materials and contribute our more than 50 years of experience in industrial gas treatment and pave the way for a sustainable cement production.”
Cement production is particularly emission heavy due to the calcination process that the industry uses to treat calcium carbonate (limestone).
In contrast to other energy-intensive industries, emissions caused by fuel consumption do not constitute the major part of total emissions.
Several different carbon capture technologies have been proposed for use in the cement industry, including amine scrubbing, calcium looping, full oxy-fuel, partial oxy-fuel and direct capture.
According to a study from Imperial College London, carbon capture in the cement industry as a whole is several years away, but the timely consideration of the challenges that lie ahead, such as retrofitting and ensuring cement plant and capture plant compatibility, will reduce their complexity in the long run.
The study adds that the lack of large-scale (>50 tonnes per day) pilot plants in the cement industry is currently the biggest impediment to further capture technology development and commercialisation.