SINTEF SLab - Sorbent laboratories for CCS

Facility Location
City & country
Trondheim (Norway)
Description & contacts of the access provider
Legal name of organisation
SINTEF - Stiftelsen SINTEF
Infrastructure contact - Primary contact
Richard Blom
RICC contact - Secondary contact
Rune Bredesen
Facility Availability
Unit of access
Availability per year
100 days
Expected duration of single experiment:
1-30 days

High throughput instrumentation for material preparation and characterization.

Robots are used for material preparation by various techniques (impregnation, precipitation etc) where solid handling is also possible. A 48 samples in parallel format is used. Individual thermal treatment of 48 samples can be carried out using individual thermal treatment sequences. The solid products can be analysed in one run by a powder X-ray diffraction unit by fast automated scanning over all 48 samples.

High throughput instrumentation for solid material testing.

Four or eight solid samples can be tested in a fully automated breakthrough unit (0.2-1.0 g of each sample) working at temperatures up to 800ºC and pressures up to 30 atm. External users can have their sorbent samples tested in harsh conditions in an efficient way. An automated gas feeding and mixing system (H2, CO2, CO, CH4, N2, H2O, H2S, misc.) can be used. Effluent gas analyses are done by online IR or MS analysis.

Volumetric adsorption isotherm measurement units (from vacuum to 100 bar).

A series of Belsorp instruments (Mini, Max, HP and VC) are used to measure single and dual component adsorption/desorption isotherms on solids with gases such as H2, CO, CO2, CH4, N2, Ar and H2O over a pressure range from high vacuum to 100 atm and temperatures from 77K to 673K. The Belsorp VC (dual component) has recently been purchased through ECCSEL I Infrastructure by funding from RCN.

Automated breakthrough unit for sorbent evaluation.

A two column breakthrough unit operating at temperatures up to 800ºC and pressures up to 30 atm with bed volume between 5 and 10 ml. The fully automated unit can perform multicycle testing. A variety of gas compositions can be mixed by an automated gas feeding and mixing system (H2, CO2, CO, CH4, N2, H2O, H2S, and misc.). Effluent gas analyses are done by IR or MS.

Four-column pressure-swing adsorption (PSA) unit.

The fully automated four-column PSA setup can be used from ambient temperature to 200ºC and at pressures from vacuum up to 70 atm. Rapid cycle PSA can also be conducted. Each column (25 mm inner diameter) needs around 100 ml extruded or pelletized adsorbent. Between 1 and 4 of the columns can be used. Analyses can be conducted by IR, MS and/or GC. The unit also includes a gas feeding system comprising CH4, CO2, CO, H2, N2, Ar, and misc. The unit has, in part, been constructed and manufactured by ECCSEL I infrastructure funded by RCN.

Dual fluidized bed CLC rig. The 3 kW circulating fluidized bed CLC rig, handling about 1-2 kg of solid, is been in operation since 2012.

This is a unit design attrition testing of (CLC) materials. It has fast circulation of granulates which should be in a relatively narrow range i.e. 125-180 µm can handle particles up to 250 and down to 60 µm. The rig has relatively small cyclones to increase the attrition part both after the fuel reactor and air reactor. The reactor is also symmetrical giving same attrition in both reactors. After both cyclones there is a double filter system, each with a separate collector for granulates (measuring cylinder). This rig can therefore investigate the hot attrition of granulates in both fuel and air reactor. Granulates in the fuel reactor will not be fully reduced due to short residence time, but this is also the case in several rigs where full combustion is the aim.

4-column PSA
State of the art, uniqueness, & specific advantages

The major part of the infrastructure contains various experimental techniques used to evaluate the performance of solid sorbents, both high surface area low temperature adsorbents and dense medium to high temperature sorbents. All techniques offered are modern and the results obtained are expected to be of high scientific quality. The experiments can be conducted under realistic conditions from ambient to high temperatures and pressures, and also under high partial pressures of steam. In addition, tests in a sulphur environment can be carried out. The equipment is run and monitored by skilled technicians/scientists. The choice of the right experiment/experimental conditions for a specific test should be established through discussion with our experts. The uniqueness in the infrastructure lays in its completeness: it covers the whole food chain from sorbent synthesis and activation, adsorption characteristics (equilibrium and kinetics) to testing at realistic conditions in various lab scale reactors. The infrastructure is most relevant for early stage development of sorbent based processes, but can also be relevant for optimization of a single sorbent to find optimal conditions for its utilization. The pilot is very well suited for testing new promising sorbents before they are tested in larger units. Estimates of cyclic sorption capacities, cycle times, energy requirements, column heights, and operational aspects of the sorbent can be deduced from the experimental data and process modelling.

Scientific Environment

We offer the above mentioned experiments to be carried out in one infrastructure. Skilled scientists and technicians are available to assist visiting researchers. Beside the infrastructure itself are more standard laboratories are available where sample preparation and other tasks can be performed. A number of GC, MS and IR gas analysers are available if needed. Also, a desk with internet access will be available during the stay. SINTEF Materials and Chemistry has implemented and maintains a quality management system which fulfils the requirements of the standard NS-EN ISO 9001:2008 within research and development within material technology, advanced materials and nanotechnology, applied chemistry and bio technology, oil and gas, and green energy and process industry.


Other Large Initiatives
EC DG Research - RFCS
Other Large Initiatives
EC DG Research - FP6 & 7
Other Large Initiatives

selected publications

Vicente I. Agueda, Jose A. Delgado, Maria A. Uguina, Pablo Brea, Aud I. Spjelkavik, Richard Blom, Carlos Grande (2015)
Adsorption and diffusion of H2, N2, CO, CH4 and CO2 in UTSA-16 metal-organic framework extrudates
Chem. Eng. Sci. 124, 159-169. DOI: 10.1016/j.ces.2014.08.039
Jasmina H. Cavka, Carlos A. Grande, Giorgia Mondino and Richard Blom (2014)
High Pressure Adsorption of CO2 and CH4 on Zr-MOFs
Ind. Eng. Chem. Res., 53, 15500-15507; DOI: 10.1021/ie500421h
Carlos A. Grande & Richard Blom (2014)
Cryogenic Adsorption of Methane and Carbon Dioxide on Zeolite 4A and 13X
Energy & Fuels, 28, 6688-6693
Egil Bakken, Paul D. Cobden, Partow Pakdel Henriksen, Silje Fosse Håkonsen, Aud I. Spjelkavik, Marit Stange, Ruth Elisabeth Stensrød, Ørnulv Vistad, Richard Blom (2011)
Development of CO2 sorbents for the SEWGS process using high throughput techniques
Energy Procedia, 4, 1104-1109