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An integrated carbon capture and conversion process to produce mineral products for large-scale use

Project Description

Increasing demand for clean energy has led to significant research towards the development of energy-efficient and environment-friendly technological solutions of carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) which encompasses methods to remove CO2 from the flue gas and from the atmosphere, recycling the CO2 for utilization and safe storage options.

Absorption-based separation can be used for pre-combustion carbon dioxide removal from natural gas. However this technology is not ready for direct implantation for the carbon capture from flue gas from large point sources such as power houses, cement plants and iron furnaces. This is because of relatively high cost of carbon dioxide removal from flue gas that reduces the thermal efficiency of power plants and increases cost of energy, cement and steel manufacturing. The major challenge is therefore to develop greener processes with better solvents or membranes with superior separation efficiency towards carbon dioxide at minimal parasitic energy demand. These media must be readily re-usable and should be economically attractive, at least in the longer run.

In our on-going research, we are developing cheaper routes to simultaneously capture and convert flue-gas carbon dioxide into mineral products by using natural or waste industrial brines with Ca++, Mg++, etc. The scientific challenges are contested round the following aspects:

Low-pressure reactive absorption based carbon capture using cheaper alkaline solvents.

Development of continuous crystallization processes to produce desired polymorphs of different mineral carbonates.

Development of useful mineral carbonate products for potentially large use, for example, in construction industry.

Thermodynamic and process modelling, design, optimization and control of the whole carbon dioxide supply chain.

The successful candidate should have (or expect to achieve) a minimum of a UK Honours degree at 2.1 or above (or equivalent) in chemical/ energy/ material/ oil & gas engineering.

The student must have an appetite for experimental and theoretical research with a boarder inter-disciplinary agenda covering chemical engineering, energy technologies, material engineering, and industrial chemistry.

The student must have a deeper interest in chemical processes and products, chemical thermodynamics, reactions engineering, biotechnology and environmental science.


Formal applications can be completed online: You should apply for Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering, to ensure that your application is passed to the correct person for processing.


Informal inquiries can be made to Dr W Afzal () with a copy of your curriculum vitae and cover letter. All general enquiries should be directed to the Postgraduate Research School ().

Funding Notes

There is no funding attached to this project. It is for self-funded students only.


Chiang, Pen-Chi, and Shu-Yuan Pan. Carbon Dioxide Mineralization and Utilization. Springer, 2017.

How good is research at Aberdeen University in General Engineering?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 38.60

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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