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Title:Microfluidic encapsulation of carbon capture materials
Author(s):Vericella, John
Advisor(s):Lewis, Jennifer A.
Department / Program:Materials Science & Engineerng
Discipline:Materials Science & Engr
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):microfluidic encapsulation
carbon capture
carbon capture and sequestration (CCS)
double emulsions
flow focusing
Abstract:Polymer microcapsules were created for the encapsulation of amine- and carbonate-rich solutions. Specifically, a flow-focusing microfluidic device was used to create double emulsions composed of a photocurable polymeric shell that surrounds an aqueous carbon dioxide absorbent core. After droplet formation, the shell was cured using ultraviolet light to form the desired polymer microcapsules. Multiple materials were investigated for the microcapsule shell and core, respectively, and their ability to capture CO2 was explored. In the first system, polymer microcapsules were created with a mercapto-ester shell composed of Norland optical adhesive (NOA 61) and a monoethanolamine (MEA) solution core. Optical and scanning electron microscopy was used to investigate the microcapsule size and uniformity. These microcapsules had a mean diameter of 355 µm +/- 10 µm, and a shell thickness ranging from 10-50 µm. Their weight loss (or gain) was measured in both CO2-lean and CO2-rich environments. These data coupled with gas permeability measurements revealed that NOA 61 polymer shells are highly impermeable (0.14 barrers) to CO2 and hence, not suitable for CO2 capture. In the second system, polymer microcapsules were created with silicone-based shells and a potassium carbonate (K2CO3) solution core. Several microscopy techniques coupled with micro-computed tomography (microCT) were used to characterize their size and uniformity. These microcapsules had mean diameter of approximately 470 µm +/- 10 µm with highly uniform shell thicknesses of 30-40 µm. Gas permeability measurements revealed that this silicone-based shell material was highly permeable (~3200 barrers) to CO2. These polymer microcapsules offer a promising new approach for CO2 capture from industrial sources, such as flue gas.
Issue Date:2012-05-22
Rights Information:Copyright 2012 John Vericella
Date Available in IDEALS:2012-05-22
Date Deposited:2012-05

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