The CO2EXIDE project aims at the development of a combined electrochemical-chemical technology for the production of ethylene oxide from biobased CO2. Initially, the electrochemical step pursues the simultaneous conversion of CO2 to ethylene at the cathode and water oxidation to hydrogen peroxide at the anode. A subsequent chemical conversion of both intermediates to ethylene oxide will deliver e.g. oligo-/polyethylene glycol in a chemical cascade reaction. The CO2EXIDE technology combines a modular nature for the feasibility of a decentralised application, a high energy and material efficiency/yield and the substitution of fossil based production of ethylene oxide. In line with the energy turnaround, the CO2EXIDE technology will be combinable with renewables and allows for the direct creation of products, which can be integrated into the existing supply chain. The reactions will be operated at low temperatures and pressures and forecast significant improvements in energy and resource efficiency combined with an enormous reduction of GHG emissions. All improvements will be quantitated using life cycle assessment.
The CO2EXIDE approach will bring together physicists, chemists, engineers and dissemination and exploitation experts from five universities/research institutions, three SMEs and two industries, innovatively joining their key technologies to develop and exploit an unprecedented process based on CO2, renewable energy and water to connect the chemical and energy sector. The project was funded by the EU in cooperation with SPIRE. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 768789.
The role of Axiom in the project is the development of the ethylene enrichment unit for the ethylene oxide synthesis process as also the evaluation of possible renewable carbon dioxide sources for the electrochemical synthesis. In addition, Axiom will provide carbon dioxide for the piloting ethylene synthesis within the research project. Carbon dioxide will be sourced from one of Axiom’s high-recovery biogas upgrading plants.