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Article

Experimental Investigation on CO2 Methanation Process for Solar Energy Storage Compared to CO2-Based Methanol Synthesis

1
Engineering Department, University of Perugia, CIRIAF, Via G. Duranti 67, 06125 Perugia, Italy
2
Department of Architectural Engineering & Technology, Environmental & Computational Design Section, TU Delft University of Technology, Julianalaan 134, 2628 BL Delft, The Netherlands
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Energies 2017, 10(7), 855; https://doi.org/10.3390/en10070855
Received: 18 May 2017 / Revised: 14 June 2017 / Accepted: 21 June 2017 / Published: 27 June 2017
The utilization of the captured CO2 as a carbon source for the production of energy storage media offers a technological solution for overcoming crucial issues in current energy systems. Solar energy production generally does not match with energy demand because of its intermittent and non-programmable nature, entailing the adoption of storage technologies. Hydrogen constitutes a chemical storage for renewable electricity if it is produced by water electrolysis and is also the key reactant for CO2 methanation (Sabatier reaction). The utilization of CO2 as a feedstock for producing methane contributes to alleviate global climate changes and sequestration related problems. The produced methane is a carbon neutral gas that fits into existing infrastructure and allows issues related to the aforementioned intermittency and non-programmability of solar energy to be overcome. In this paper, an experimental apparatus, composed of an electrolyzer and a tubular fixed bed reactor, is built and used to produce methane via Sabatier reaction. The objective of the experimental campaign is the evaluation of the process performance and a comparison with other CO2 valorization paths such as methanol production. The investigated pressure range was 2–20 bar, obtaining a methane volume fraction in outlet gaseous mixture of 64.75% at 8 bar and 97.24% at 20 bar, with conversion efficiencies of, respectively, 84.64% and 99.06%. The methanol and methane processes were compared on the basis of an energy parameter defined as the spent energy/stored energy. It is higher for the methanol process (0.45), with respect to the methane production process (0.41–0.43), which has a higher energy storage capability. View Full-Text
Keywords: CO2 methanation; carbon recycling; energy storage; solar energy; P2G Power to Gas; synthetic fuels CO2 methanation; carbon recycling; energy storage; solar energy; P2G Power to Gas; synthetic fuels
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MDPI and ACS Style

Castellani, B.; Gambelli, A.M.; Morini, E.; Nastasi, B.; Presciutti, A.; Filipponi, M.; Nicolini, A.; Rossi, F. Experimental Investigation on CO2 Methanation Process for Solar Energy Storage Compared to CO2-Based Methanol Synthesis. Energies 2017, 10, 855. https://doi.org/10.3390/en10070855

AMA Style

Castellani B, Gambelli AM, Morini E, Nastasi B, Presciutti A, Filipponi M, Nicolini A, Rossi F. Experimental Investigation on CO2 Methanation Process for Solar Energy Storage Compared to CO2-Based Methanol Synthesis. Energies. 2017; 10(7):855. https://doi.org/10.3390/en10070855

Chicago/Turabian Style

Castellani, Beatrice, Alberto M. Gambelli, Elena Morini, Benedetto Nastasi, Andrea Presciutti, Mirko Filipponi, Andrea Nicolini, and Federico Rossi. 2017. "Experimental Investigation on CO2 Methanation Process for Solar Energy Storage Compared to CO2-Based Methanol Synthesis" Energies 10, no. 7: 855. https://doi.org/10.3390/en10070855

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