Development of a cost-effective CO2 adsorbent from petroleum coke via KOH activation

Eunji Jang, Seung Wan Choi, Seok Min Hong, Sangcheol Shin, Ki Bong Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

35 Citations (Scopus)


The capture of CO2 via adsorption is considered an effective technology for decreasing global warming issues; hence, adsorbents for CO2 capture have been actively developed. Taking into account cost-effectiveness and environmental concerns, the development of CO2 adsorbents from waste materials is attracting considerable attention. In this study, petroleum coke (PC), which is the carbon residue remaining after heavy oil upgrading, was used to produce high-value-added porous carbon for CO2 capture. Porous carbon materials were prepared by KOH activation using different weight ratios of KOH/PC (1:1, 2:1, 3:1, and 4:1) and activation temperatures (600, 700, and 800°C). The specific surface area and total pore volume of resulting porous carbon materials increased with KOH amount, reaching up to 2433m2/g and 1.11cm3/g, respectively. The sample prepared under moderate conditions with a KOH/PC weight ratio of 2:1 and activation temperature of 700°C exhibited the highest CO2 adsorption uptake of 3.68mmol/g at 25°C and 1bar. Interestingly, CO2 adsorption uptake was linearly correlated with the volume of micropores less than 0.8nm, indicating that narrow micropore volume is crucial for CO2 adsorption. The prepared porous carbon materials also exhibited good selectivity for CO2 over N2, rapid adsorption, facile regeneration, and stable adsorption-desorption cyclic performance, demonstrating potential as a candidate for CO2 capture.

Original languageEnglish
JournalApplied Surface Science
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2017


  • CO adsorption
  • KOH activation
  • Narrow micropore
  • Petroleum coke
  • Porous carbon

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films

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