Low transition temperature mixtures as innovative and sustainable CO2 capture solvents

L.F. Zubeir, M.H.M Lacroix, M.C. Kroon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

75 Citations (Scopus)


The potential of three newly discovered low transition temperature mixtures (LTTMs) is explored as sustainable substituents for the traditional carbon dioxide (CO2) absorbents. LTTMs are mixtures of two solid compounds, a hydrogen bond donor (HBD) and a hydrogen bond acceptor (HBA), which form liquids upon mixing with melting points far below those of the individual compounds. In this work the HBD is lactic acid and the HBAs are tetramethylammonium chloride, tetraethylammonium chloride, and tetrabutylammonium chloride. These compounds were found to form LTTMs for the first time at molar ratios of HBD:HBA = 2:1. First, the LTTMs were characterized by determining the thermal operating window (e.g., decomposition temperature and glass transition temperature) and the physical properties (e.g., density and viscosity). Thereafter, the phase behavior of CO2 with the LTTMs has been measured using a gravimetric magnetic suspension balance operating in the static mode at 308 and 318 K and pressures up to 2 MPa. The CO2 solubility increased with increasing chain length, increasing pressure, and decreasing temperature. The Peng–Robinson equation of state was applied to correlate the phase equilibria. From the solubility data, thermodynamic parameters were determined (e.g., Henry’s law coefficient and enthalpy of absorption). The heat of absorption was found to be similar to that in conventional physical solvents (-11.21 to -14.87 kJ·mol–1). Furthermore, the kinetics in terms of the diffusion coefficient of CO2 in all LTTMs were determined (10–11–10–10 m2·s–1). Even though the CO2 solubilities in the studied LTTMs were found to be slightly lower than those in thoroughly studied conventional physical solvents, LTTMs are a promising new class of absorbents due to their low cost, their environmentally friendly character, and their easy tunability, allowing further optimization for carbon capture.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14429-14441
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
Issue number49
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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