Skip to content

Conversion of captured CO2 to industrial chemicals

The UK, European Union and USA have all committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, with the UK being the world’s first major economy to pass laws decreeing it would end its contribution to global warming by 2050.  In the UK, carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) is likely to be a key technology in achieving net zero targets.

The CoCaCo2la project aims to assist the drive towards net zero by converting CO2 to ethylene.  It will apply flexible, tuneable CO2 electrolysers to convert CO2 into ethylene (C2H4) on demand, using a nanostructured copper catalyst, while harnessing excess renewable energy at times of low or negative energy prices, or when the power grid is overloaded.  The converted ethylene can also then be used for processes such as the production of polyethylene.

The technology behind CoCaCo2la will overcome scale up challenges and produce an integrated, room temperature, electrochemical CCU system to produce the ethylene, which is a multi-carbon product, as well as develop a bench-top demonstrator.  The resulting benefits include more flexibility for the grid, the generation of value-added chemicals and a reduction in CO2 emissions, all of which will also be better for the environment and wider industry.  The project has a two year duration.

Partners: Idaho National Laboratory (INL), USA, Centre for Research and Technology Hellas (CERTH), Technovative Solutions Limited, Pilkington Technology Management Limited (PTML) and the Materials Innovation Centre (MatIC).

CoCaCo2la has received funding from BEIS under the UK ACT ERA-NET EC GA 691712.  This funding has been made available from the Government’s £1 Billion Net Zero Innovation Portfolio to provide key innovation to develop technologies needed to tackle climate change.  The EU’s Accelerating CCS Technologies (ACT) programme is an international initiative to establish CCUS as a tool to combat global warming, providing funding for research and innovation projects that can lead to safe and cost-effective CCUS technology.

Subscribe to our newsletter to receive the latest news and events from TWI Innovation Network:

Subscribe >