A Novel Approach to Carbon-Dioxide Purification for Oxy-Combustion System

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Carbon dioxide purification
Professor Ahmed Ghoniem
Department of Mechanical Engineering , MIT
External Link (web.mit.edu)
Chukwunwike Iloeje
Department of Mechanical Engineering , MIT
Randall Field
MIT Energy Initiative
Patent Protection

Carbon dioxide purification

US Patent Pending 2013-0122432


There has been an increasing concern regarding the impact of greenhouse gases on the global climate, which has spurred a widespread search for alternative energy sources and limiting carbon dioxide emissions. A strong Carbon Dioxide (CO) purifier can be useful for sensor manufacturers, car manufacturers, research laboratories, and refineries to mitigate the emission of harmful pollutants. 

Problem Addressed

The low nitrogen count of the flue gas  from oxy-fuel combustion makes it much easier to separate the COfor sequestration. However, certain reservoirs which store the COcannot tolerate specific contaminants at concentrations above a threshold amount. This method creates a stronger separation process that addresses some of the usual complications such as corrosion, hydrate formation, aqueous phase separation and phase behavior within the reservoir. 


This invention proposes a CO2 purification process consisting of three major sections: a NOx and SOx removal unit, a non-condensable gas removal unit, and a COpressurization unit. The method described comprises of feeding a fluid inlet stream comprising of carbon dioxide and/or a contaminant to a distillation column, and removing at least a portion of the contaminants within the absoption column to create a fluid outlet stream enriched in carbon dioxide and lean in the other contaminants.The purified CO2 stream produced can then be sequestered or used as part of an enhanced oil recovery process.


  • Achieves purity requirements for oxy-combustion systems over a wide range of constraints
  • Reduces the amount of potential damages