Environmental science & technology

Toward the understanding of chemical absorption processes for post-combustion capture of carbon dioxide: electronic and steric considerations from the kinetics of reactions of CO2(aq) with sterically hindered amines.

PMID 23190202


The present study reports (a) the determination of both the kinetic rate constants and equilibrium constants for the reaction of CO(2)(aq) with sterically hindered amines and (b) an attempt to elucidate a fundamental chemical understanding of the relationship between the amine structure and chemical properties of the amine that are relevant for postcombustion capture of CO(2) (PCC) applications. The reactions of CO(2)(aq) with a series of linear and methyl substituted primary amines and alkanolamines have been investigated using stopped-flow spectrophotometry and (1)H NMR measurements at 25.0 °C. The specific mechanism of absorption for each of the amines, that is CO(2) hydration and/or carbamate formation, is examined and, based on the mechanism, the kinetic and equilibrium constants for the formation of carbamic acid/carbamates, including protonation constants of the carbamate, are reported for amines that follow this pathway. A Brønsted correlation relating the kinetic rate constants and equilibrium constants for the formation of carbamic acid/carbamates with the protonation constant of the amine is reported. Such a relationship facilitates an understanding of the effects of steric and electronic properties of the amine toward its reactivity with CO(2). Further, such relationships can be used to guide the design of new amines with improved properties relevant to PCC applications.

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