A system for forming metal hydroxide from a metal carbonate utilizes a water electrolysis cell having an acid-producing anode and a hydroxyl-producing cathode immersed in a water solution of sufficient ionic content to allow an electric current to pass between the hydroxyl-producing cathode and the acid-producing anode. A metal carbonate is placed in close proximity to the acid-producing anode. A direct current electrical voltage is provided across the acid-producing anode and the hydroxyl-producing cathode sufficient to generate acid at the acid-producing anode and hydroxyl ions at the hydroxyl-producing cathode. The acid dissolves at least part of the metal carbonate into metal and carbonate ions allowing the metal ions to travel toward the hydroxyl-producing cathode and to combine with the hydroxyl ions to form the metal hydroxide. The carbonate ions travel toward the acid-producing anode and form carbonic acid and/or water and carbon dioxide.
STATEMENT AS TO RIGHTS TO INVENTIONS MADE UNDER FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. DE-AC52-07NA27344 between the United States Department of Energy and Lawrence Livermore National Security, LLC for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.