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Concentrated Solar Energy for Thermochemically Producing Liquid Fuels from CO2 and H2O

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Review article (peer-reviewed)
Publication date 2011
Author Loutzenhiser PG, Stamatiou A, Villasmil W, Meier A, Steinfeld A,
Project Reduction of CO2 via two-step solar thermochemical cycles using redox pairs - thermodynamics, kinetics, and reactor technolog
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Review article (peer-reviewed)

Journal JOM
Volume (Issue) 63(1)
Page(s) 32 - 34
Title of proceedings JOM
DOI 10.1007/s11837-011-0008-3


A two-step solar thermochemical cycle for producing syngas from H2O and CO2 via Zn/ZnO redox reactions is considered. The first, endothermic step is the thermolysis of ZnO to Zn and O2 using concentrated solar radiation as the source of process heat. The second, non-solar, exothermic step is the reaction of Zn with mixtures of H2O and CO2 yielding high-quality syngas (mainly H2 and CO) and ZnO; the latter is recycled to the first solar step, resulting in net reactions CO2 = CO+0.5O2 and H2O= H2 +0.5O2. Syngas is further processed to liquid fuels via Fischer-Tropsch or other catalytic reforming processes. State-of-the-art reactor technologies and experimental results are provided for both steps of the cycle.