Calgary, Hawaii firms to work together on tech to reduce carbon capture cost, size

Image: Joey Podlubny/JWN

Calgary-based Industrial Climate Solutions Inc. and Kahului, Hawaii-headquartered Westech Environmental Solutions have entered into an agreement to work together to commercialize a new technology for carbon capture, utilization and storage.

The license grants ICSI exclusive rights to scale up and commercialize WES’s suite of gas/liquid and three-phase contactor/reactor technologies – known as the Regenerative Froth Contactor (RFC) technology. The license covers CO2 and other gas absorption, particulate removal, desulfurization, scrubbing, sparging (removing dissolved gases/volatile compounds in a liquid), chemical reactor, and all other applications.

The companies say that RFC technology delivers a five-fold improvement in mass-transfer performance and process productivity compared with conventional absorption columns, with a corresponding reduction in column size and installation footprint. In addition, they say the RFC absorber tolerates very high levels of entrained or precipitated solids without fouling, a factor that has been downfall of a number of novel capture processes when using conventional absorption columns.

“The RFC technology developed at WES opens the door to significant size reductions and cost savings for post-combustion CO2 capture applications,” ICSI CEO Richard Adamson said in a statement.

“This is a key enabling step in advancing carbon capture, utilization and storage from demonstration projects to integrated regional industrial emissions management systems. And this is only one of several applications in multiple markets for this ground-breaking technology.”

The intellectual property portfolio covered under the license includes a dozen patents and continuations-in-part registered in the U.S., Canada, the E.U. and Australia. This portfolio is the result of more than a decade of work by WES and its predecessors, involving investment of at least US$4 million.

“The opportunity to work with ICSI will take the terrific work done by the WES R&D team and bridge it into global industrial markets,” said Alec McBarnet, chair of Westech Environmental Solutions.

“The team in Calgary has the right technical experience, coupled with market and business track records, to take the very promising froth contactor technology to a family of breakthrough industrial process products. The alignment between our two companies around delivering a more sustainable industrial economy fit for the 21st century and beyond could not be better.”

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