Direct Conversion of Flue Gas to Value-Added Chemicals Using a Carbon -Nuetral Process

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OPEN 2021
Chicago, Illinois
Project Term:
03/22/2022 - 03/21/2025

Technology Description:

The Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) will develop a novel electrochemical process for electrochemically synthesizing C2+ alcohols, i.e., ethanol and propanol from captured CO2, at high rates in a laboratory-scale zero-gap flow electrolyzer. The IIT team will study the effects of flue gas composition and operating conditions on the reaction kinetics parameters and mass transport rate of the flue-gas-based CO2 reduction reaction. Ultimately, an environmentally friendly, economically feasible, and energy efficient CCU process will be developed for large-scale carbon-neutral production of chemical and fuels that are currently produced in carbon-intensive and energy-consuming thermal processes.

Potential Impact:

IIT will address the US need to develop sustainable, carbon-neutral production of chemicals at the gigaton scale while simultaneously capturing CO2 at the source of production in a distributed way. The project aims to:


Directly convert CO2 to value-added products via an electrochemical process that also offers a promising way to carbon-neutral manufacturing of chemicals and fuels.


Achieve net-zero CO2 emission by using renewable energy.


Significantly reduce the cost of carbon (less than $40/ton CO2) and save additional ~900 kWh per ton of CO2 by eliminating a separate CO2 capture process.


ARPA-E Program Director:
Dr. Jack Lewnard
Project Contact:
Prof. Mohammad Asadi
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Project Contact Email:

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