Amino functionalised Silica-Aerogels for CO2-adsorption at low partial pressure
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Effective adsorption of CO2 at low partial pressures is required for many technical processes, such as gas purification or CO2 removal in closed loop environmental control systems. Since the concentration of CO2 in such applications is rather low, a high adsorption capacity is a required property for the adsorbent. Silica aerogels possessing an open pore structure, a high porosity and a high surface area, have a great potential for utilisation as CO2 adsorbents. Nonetheless in order to reach high adsorption capacities, silica aerogels should be functionalised, for instance by amino functionalisation. In this work, two different functionalisation methods were applied for the generation of amino functionalised aerogels: co-condensation during the sol-gel process and post-treatment of the gel. The co-condensation functionalisation allows the introduction of up to 1.44 wt.% nitrogen into the aerogel structure with minor reductions in surface area, leading however only to minor increases in the adsorption capacity at low partial pressures. The post functionalisation of the gel causes a greater loss in surface area, but the CO2 adsorption capacity increases, due to the introduction of higher amounts of amino groups into the aerogel structure (up to 5.2 wt.% nitrogen). Respectively, 0.523 mmol CO2/g aerogel could be adsorbed at 250 Pa. This value is comparable with the adsorption capacity at this pressure of a standard commercially available adsorbent, Zeolite 13X.
KeywordsCarbon dioxide adsorption Silica Aerogel Amino functionalisation Zeolite 13X Low partial pressure
The authors are grateful to the “Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung” (BMBF) for their financial support.