The thermal fixation of atmospheric nitrogen is explored, using a recently developed concept of a particle-seeded solar receiver. The thermodynamics and the kinetics of the formation of nitric oxide (NO) in air at temperatures of about 2300 K are analyzed, and the required residence time and the time to reach the steady state of the reaction between nitrogen and oxygen are calculated. The novel particle-seeded receiver concept is briefly described. The adaptation of the particle-seeded receiver to the fixation reaction in terms of heating rate of the air and residence time is validated based on previous test results and complementary calculations. A proposed method where the solar receiver/reactor is simultaneously coupled with power production, using the exhausted hot air from the reactor to generate electricity, is described. This concept can definitely increase the economical benefit of the process and, thus, its potential attractiveness. Some illustrative figures for a commercial size system are provided.
Solar Fixation of Atmospheric Nitrogen
Contributed by the Solar Energy Division of THE AMERICAN SOCIETY OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERS for publication in the ASME JOURNAL OF SOLAR ENERGY ENGINEERING. Manuscript received by the ASME Solar Energy Division, Jan. 2003, final revision, Apr. 2003. Associate Editor: A. Steinfeld.
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Epstein, M., Bertocchi, R., and Karni, J. (February 12, 2004). "Solar Fixation of Atmospheric Nitrogen ." ASME. J. Sol. Energy Eng. February 2004; 126(1): 626–632. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.1636190
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