Utilization of steel slag as a highly efficient absorbent for SO2 removal at coal-fired power stations

Hongzhe Li, Ruitang Guo, Yipei Chen, Gang Yang, Tao Wu

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


In this study, steel slag, a waste generated from steelmaking processes, was used as an absorbent for the removal of SO2 in coal-fired flue gas. The results showed that SO2 could be removed completely in the bubbling-bed reactor by the steel slag slurry under certain operating conditions. Effort was then made to study the kinetics of SO2 absorption in steel slag slurry. It is found that the gas-liquid absorption model fits well with the experimental data and can be used to predict the SO2 absorption process. Results also demonstrated that the maximum SO2 uptake capacity of steel slag reaches 0.68 g, which is about 36 wt% higher than that of the traditional limestone-gypsum desulfurization process under similar conditions, while the SO2 breakthrough time reaches the maximum of 951 min under a flow rate of 420 mL/min, an initial SO2 concentration of 700 ppm, and a solid-liquid ratio of 1.5 g/100 mL. Moreover, it was found that SO42−, was the main anions detected in the liquid phase after desulphurization and the pH of the solution decreased from 12.9 to 3.2. This study proved that steel slag is of the potential to replace limestone in the wet flue gas desulfurization process, which contributes to the mitigation of global CO2 emissions and solves environmental problems associated with the disposal of steel slag.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100276
JournalEnvironmental Advances
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022


  • Coal-fired power generation
  • SO absorption
  • Steel slag, Industrial waste utilization
  • Wet flue gas desulphurization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)


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