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Separation Processes

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Reducing CO2 emissions from pig iron production

Researchers of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT; Germany; www.kit.edu) and the SMS group GmbH (Düsseldorf, Germany; www.sms-group.com) have developed a new process to reduce CO2 emissions from worldwide steel production by several hundred million tons per year. It is based…

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Recycle any type of magnet from end-of-life products

A new pilot plant is demonstrating a proprietary technology for recycling magnet materials from end-of-life (EOL) products, such as electric motors, automobile parts and hard-disk drives. Developed by Cyclic Materials Inc. (Toronto, Ont., Canada; www.cyclicmaterials.earth), the Mag-Xtract process is said…

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Innovations in Pilot-Plant Distillation Process Design

Small-scale distillation processes have specific concerns that are different than commercial-scale distillation. Presented here are several topics, including column internals and column-sizing software, considered from the perspective of pilot-scale distillation The design and operation of laboratory- and pilot-scale columns are…

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Converting natural gas to alcohols using MOFs

Capturing natural gas from petroleum drilling wells is economically challenging, but would have positive environmental impacts because it would eliminate the need for flaring and could allow the hydrocarbons to be converted into useful chemicals. Now, research led by chemists…

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Direct molten-salt electroplating cuts battery costs

The extremely high material purity demanded for conventional lithium-ion battery manufacturing creates considerable costs for transporting and refining lithium and other raw materials. Through the development of a single-step electroplating process that uses lower-purity raw materials and a nanostructured-foam electrode…

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First commercial DAC facility in the U.S. captures CO2 for concrete

In November 2023, Heirloom Carbon Technologies (Tracy, Calif.; www.heirloomcarbon.com) unveiled the United States’ first commercial direct air capture (DAC) facility, which can capture up to 1,000 ton/yr of CO2. The process first uses renewable energy to remove CO2 from limestone…

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Fouling-immune membrane available for brackish-water RO applications

In November 2023, the first commercial test was initiated for a novel, fouling-immune membrane for brackish-water reverse osmosis (BWRO) applications through an early-access program. Membrane developer ZwitterCo (Woburn, Mass.; www.zwitterco.com) says its membrane is fouling-immune in cases where fouling of…

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Steam Reboilers: Condensate Vessel Balance to Reboiler is Important

Properly locating a simple 1–2-in. balance line can make all the difference in successful reboiler operation Steam reboilers are crucial to production in petroleum refineries and petrochemical plants, representing huge capital investment in distillation columns. Regardless of the investment made…

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A continuous electrochemical process for direct-air CO2 removal

Direct-air capture (DAC) of atmospheric carbon dioxide presents promise for helping to reach global-warming reduction goals. However, many DAC technologies are hindered by high costs and inefficiency. RepAir Carbon (Yokne-am Illit, Israel; www.repair-carbon.com) recently launched a field prototype of its…

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Upcycling waste ammonia from beef farming

A new ammonia-recovery plant has begun steady-state operation to demonstrate a patented process to upcycle the ammonia content from cattle manure into stabilized fertilizer ingredients. The Ammonia Recovery System (ARS) was developed by Bion Environmental Technologies, Inc. (Old Bethpage, N.Y.;…