Cooperative CO2 Absorption Isotherms from a Bifunctional Guanidine and Bifunctional Alcohol

Rachel Steinhardt, Stanley C. Hiew, Hemakesh Mohapatra, Du Nguyen, Zachary Oh, Richard Truong, Aaron Esser-Kahn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Designing new liquids for CO2 absorption is a challenge in CO2 removal. Here, achieving low regeneration energies while keeping high selectivity and large capacity are current challenges. Recent cooperative metal-organic frameworks have shown the potential to address many of these challenges. However, many absorbent systems and designs rely on liquid capture agents. We present herein a liquid absorption system which exhibits cooperative CO2 absorption isotherms. Upon introduction, CO2 uptake is initially suppressed, followed by an abrupt increase in absorption. The liquid consists of a bifunctional guanidine and bifunctional alcohol, which, when dissolved in bis(2-methoxyethyl) ether, forms a secondary viscous phase within seconds in response to increases in CO2. The precipitation of this second viscous phase drives CO2 absorption from the gas phase. The isotherm of the bifunctional system differs starkly from the analogous monofunctional system, which exhibits limited CO2 uptake across the same pressure range. In our system, CO2 absorption is strongly solvent dependent. In DMSO, both systems exhibit hyperbolic isotherms and no precipitation occurs. Subsequent 1H NMR experiments confirmed the formation of distinct alkylcarbonate species having either one or two molecules of CO2 bound. The solvent and structure relationships derived from these results can be used to tailor new liquid absorption systems to the conditions of a given CO2 separation process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1271-1275
Number of pages5
JournalACS Central Science
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 27 2017
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering


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