Catalytic effect of water on calcium carbonate decomposition

Guido Giammaria, Leon Lefferts*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)
111 Downloads (Pure)


The search for cheap solutions for carbon dioxide capture in order to prevent global warming is still challenging. Calcium oxide may be a suitable sorbent, but the regeneration process from calcium carbonate requires too high temperatures, causing sintering and decreasing sorption capacity. In this study the effect of steam on the decomposition of the carbonate is investigated. A clear rate-enhancing effect up to a factor of 4 is observed when steam concentrations up to 1.25% are applied during isothermal reactions at temperatures between 590 and 650°C. This results in a decrease of the apparent activation barrier from 201 to 140kJmol-1, caused by the opening of a new reaction pathway. The kinetics of steam catalyzed decomposition of CaCO3 is discussed and a simple reaction scheme is proposed, including estimation of kinetic constants. The new pathway proceeds via formation of a stable surface bicarbonate followed by decomposition to surface OH groups, which then decompose by desorbing H2O.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-356
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of CO2 Utilization
Early online date4 Jul 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2019


  • UT-Hybrid-D
  • Carbon capture and storage
  • Catalytic effect of water
  • Decomposition reaction
  • Greenhouse gases
  • Calcium carbonate


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