UK’s first carbon capture utilisation demonstration plant opens

UK’s first carbon capture utilisation demonstration plant opens
Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) is a technology that can capture up to 90% of the carbon dioxide emissions pro­duced from the use of fossil fuels in electricity generation and industrial processes, preventing the carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.

Econic Technologies opens a Horizon 2020 and investor-backed customer carbon capture utilisation demonstration plant in the North of England to show customers how its catalysts enable the production of polyols for greener plastics.

Clean-tech pioneer Econic Technologies openes a first-of-its-kind carbon capture plant in the UK to demonstrate to customers how its innovative catalyst technologies can convert CO2 into polyols, which can then be used to make more sustainable polyurethanes for use in products such as automobiles, bedding and footwear.

The new plant is located in Runcorn, UK, and it comprises all elements of the production process, integrated from reaction through to final product treatment, in a bespoke industrial unit.

The new carbon capture demonstration plant is an exciting step forward in Econic Technologies’ journey to help manufacturers unlock the positive potential of waste CO2. Until now, the creation of polyols from CO2 has been performed in plants at high pressures and temperatures. Thanks to its new tunable catalyst, Econic Technologies’ plant will be able to produce samples of CO2-based polyols at lower, industrially relevant temperatures and pressures.

The demonstration plant has also received substantial European support through a Horizon 2020 SME award.

Rulande Rutgers, head of process and product engineering at Econic Technologies, said: “Securing such highly competitive public funding has been an important vote of confidence for Econic Technologies and is allowing the company to accelerate development pace. Using some of this funding for the new demonstration plant is one way it is helping turn the potential of our catalysts into reality.”

How will the new plant help development?

Rowena Sellens, CEO of Econic Technologies, commented: “The demonstration plant is essential to helping our pioneering catalyst technologies develop as they move out of the lab and into the factory.

“As a company, we want to help drive the market adoption of polyols and our new plant provides an opportunity for us to encourage significant uptake in the industry. The interest from polyol manufacturers and downstream polyol users in the plant has been overwhelming already. We are extremely confident that once we start demonstrating what our technology can do, we will help catalyse a transformation in attitude when it comes to the positive potential of carbon.”

Econic Technologies’ catalysts enable manufacturers to reuse waste CO2, by allowing it to be incorporated as a feedstock, which offers not only a sustainable benefit by reducing the reliance on fossil fuels but also an economical benefit by enhancing margins. The company hopes that by 2027, 30% of all polyol production will take place using Econic’s catalyst technologies, which could save 3.5 million tonnes of CO2 emissions each year – the equivalent of taking two million cars off the road.

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