Development of a monoethanolamine/n-butanol biphasic solution with tunable phase separation for CO2 absorption via combined experimental and computational study: Role of solvation environment, phase separation mechanism

QL Luo and SM Hong and HX Gao and YY Li and N Wang and GS Hwang and B Yoon and ZW Liang, SEPARATION AND PURIFICATION TECHNOLOGY, 301, 121861 (2022).

DOI: 10.1016/j.seppur.2022.121861

An energy-efficient monoethanolamine (MEA)/ n-butanol biphasic solution with tunable phase separation was proposed in this study. The effect of the solvation environment and the mechanism of the liquid-liquid phase separation were investigated systematically by both experimental study and molecular dynamics simulations. Experimental results showed that the concentration ratio of n-butanol and water played a significant role in the phase separation behavior and desorption performance, and can effectively reduce the heat duty of desorption. The mechanism of phase separation was obtained using H-1 NMR and molecular dynamics simulation, which was related to the strong strength of hydrogen bonds between MEAH(+) and H2O, MEACOO(-) and H2O, and the van der Waals forces between MEAH(+) and MEACOO(-). In addition, the effect of the solvation environment on the phase separation was also attributed to the strong intermolecular interaction between MEAH(+) and MEACOO(-). This study highlights the effect of the solvation environment on the tunable phase separation and the mechanism of phase separation for the further development of biphasic solutions.

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