Carbony is a low cost CO2 reduction technology which employs a process to separate the carbon dioxide (CO2) and sulphur dioxide (SO2) and simultaneously reduces CO2 emissions and SO2 emissions produced by the combustion of carbon-containing matter. This technology is aimed at high emission and potentially high polluting industries, such as power plants.
Addressing the challenge of climate change, while meeting the need for affordable energy, will require access to and deployment of the full range of energy efficient and low carbon technologies.
The CO2 reduction technology employs a process which separates the carbon dioxide (CO2) and sulphur dioxide (SO2) by simultaneously reducing CO2 and SO2 emissions produced by the combustion of carbon-containing matter. This technology is aimed at high emission and potentially high polluting industries such as power plants.
The technology is based on a specially designed separator, which functions as a reactor, with very low energy requirements. The essence of the separation technology is based on chemical absorption and a special heat exchange process. The reactor is designed as a heat exchange unit which separates the CO2 and SO2 gases in an energy efficient and cost effective manner.
The use of this reactor will allow Astra to separate the CO2 and SO2 emissions produced by the combustion of carbon-containing matter.
Astra Innovations Pty Ltd, a subsidiary of Astra Resources, has finalised key agreements to acquire technology which is expected to have a major impact on the emission of CO2 and other gases in the energy industries and in heavy manufacturing.
The acquisition, which includes a patented method for the technology and equipment required for the separation of gas mixtures to their various components, is expected to be completed in the next 30 days. Once acquired, the IP allows Astra to fully develop the technology, with the pilot device expected to be completed by the end of 2012 by its subsidiary Astra Mining Hungary.
While the theory is not new, the main issue surrounding similar processes has always concerned the physical implementation and the energy requirements. During a normal combustion of fossil fuels, such as coal, oil, gas and wood (for energy production) the combustion process releases emissions into the air in the form of flue gas. Flue gas, which is toxic when untreated, occurs in every combustion process and predominantly consists of water vapour, carbon dioxide, sulphur, dust particles and nitrogen compounds.
The technology of ‘clean emissions’, i.e. removing CO2 and the reduction or complete elimination of other substances such as sulphur compounds from the emitted gases, has always proved a complex and difficult challenge due to the physical implementation of the technology and the energy requirements, which are generally substantial. However, the IP acquired by Astra contains a cost effective way of implementing this process.
If the fuel being used in the power plant is enriched with pure oxygen and then the nitrogen content of the air is replaced by the flue gas the ratio of the CO2 can then increase to well above 80%. If a process is then introduced within the conventional power plant the water vapour is condensed and the remaining almost pure carbon dioxide will be able to be further processed for transport and storage. This is a known process and substantial amounts technical documentation exists both in the public domain and in confidential form. The methods of implementation and addressing the energy requirements are however the core requirements of ongoing research.
Using this method, which is based on an energy efficient and modular system to separate out the nitrogen, very little or no extra energy is required for the process in order to separate and filter out the CO2 from the flue gas. The process does consume a part of the total amount of energy produced by the generating plant, but once the process has started the ongoing process becomes self-sufficient.
One of the main advantages of this technology is that the emission of the environmentally damaging nitrogen compounds are substantially reduced or completely eliminated. These nitrogen compounds form the largest percentage of the emissions produced in the power generation process. The system also provides a method of filtering out sulphur dioxide, dust and heavy metal particles.