The project Carbon2Chem aims at cross-linking steel, chemical and energy industries. On the one hand, the purpose is to absorb peaks which arise in renewable power generation by electrolytic hydrogen production. Thereby, the project contributes to the grid stability and the integration of renewable energy sources into the energy supply. On the other hand, the project aims at the utilization of carbon-rich flue gases from steel industries. Previously, these gases were mainly used for heat generation. In contrast, the goal of Carbon2Chem is the chemical utilization of these flue gases for the production e.g., of fuels and polymers.
The tasks of the Chair of Technical Thermodynamics (LTT), RWTH Aachen University are part of the sub-project Carbon2Polymers and aim at the utilization of carbon-rich flue gases from steel industries in the production of polycarbonates and isocyanates. For this purpose, new synthesis routes are explored and assessed based on economic and ecological criteria.
One focal of the work at LTT is the development and optimization of processes for producing methyl formate from H2 and CO2 as well as further processing to isocyanates. The quality of these processes regarding economic viability and environmental performance on the one hand depend on process structures and conditions and on the other hand on the chosen solvents and auxiliary materials. Consequently, methods for integrated process design and solvent selection are pursued at LTT in order to achieve maximal performance.
Furthermore, another focus of the work at LTT is the ecological assessment of newly developed synthesis routes. These assessments are performed based on the methods of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) which estimate environmental impacts of new process concepts compared to established processes. The integration of LCA into early process design enables the consideration of environmental impacts and according improvements of process concepts at early stages.Copyright: BMBF