The use of microwave heating for the thermal regeneration of a porous carbon adsorbent in adsorptive carbon capture was evaluated. In this Microwave Swing Adsorption (MSA) process, a multimode microwave oven has been used to accelerate the desorption of CO2 after the adsorption of a CO2 / N2 (15/85 v/v) mixture. Starting from a commercial activated carbon (AC) material (MSP-20X), sorbent extrudates were prepared and loaded in a Teflon column. The heating of the sorbent bed inside the microwave (MW) cavity was characterised at different locations. Although the adsorption bed is not heated uniformly due to hot spots in the multimode MW cavity, flowing a purge gas reduces the non-uniform heating during the regeneration step. This study also reports that MSA regeneration achieves extremely fast total desorption (in 56 to 79 s), the quickest regeneration reported up to date in MSA, and very rapid desorption rates allowing swift adsorption–desorption cycles. This fast desorption is associated with the extremely high heating rates achieved (100 to 400 °C/min). We show that the desorption rate is faster when using higher powers at practically identical MW energy inputs. Complete CO2 desorption can be achieved at slightly longer durations when using 2-step MW heating. When comparing the MSA results with a reference TSA process, MSA outperforms TSA, due to the higher heating rates achieved by MSA. During eleven adsorption–desorption cycles, it is evidenced that the MSA process can regenerate the adsorption bed at a high reproducibility. The microporosity of the material remained intact during the MSA, revealing that localised heating and the high heating rates are not damaging the sorbent material.

Originele taal-2English
TijdschriftChemical Engineering Journal
Nummer van het tijdschrift4
StatusPublished - 15 okt 2022


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