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Life Cycle Assessment of Natural Gas-based Chemical Looping for Hydrogen Production


Hydrogen production from natural gas, combined with advanced CO2 capture technologies, such as iron-based chemical looping (CL), is considered in the present work. The processes are compared to the conventional base case, i.e. hydrogen production via natural gas steam reforming (SR) without CO2 capture. The processes are simulated using commercial software (ChemCAD) and evaluated from a technical point of view considering important key performance indicators such as hydrogen thermal output, net electric power, carbon capture rate and specific CO2 emissions. The environmental evaluation is performed using Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) with the following system boundaries considered: i) hydrogen production from natural gas coupled to CO2 capture technologies based on CL, ii) upstream processes such as: extraction and processing of natural gas, ilmenite and catalyst production and iii) downstream processes such as: H2 and CO2 compression, transport and storage. The LCA assessment was carried out using the GaBi6 software. Different environmental impact categories, following here the CML 2001 impact assessment method, were calculated and used to determine the most suitable technology. Sensitivity analyses of the CO2 compression, transport and storage stages were performed in order to examine their effect on the environmental impact categories.

Funding source: This work was supported by the Romanian – Swiss Research Programme, project no. IZERZO_141976/1:
Related subjects: Production & Supply Chain
Countries: Romania ; Switzerland

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