Science

Scientists Take A Massive Step Forward In Converting Air Into Fuel

Scientists Take A Massive Step Forward In Converting Air Into Fuel

Their work, titled "A Process for Capturing CO2 from the Atmosphere", was detailed June 7 in the journal Joule. According to the firm, the cost should be roughly $94-$232 per ton of carbon dioxide captured. Keith says his pilot plant in Squamish is now taking a tonne of carbon dioxide every day out of the atmosphere using nearly entirely commercial components and well-understood processes.

Carbon dioxide is one of the biggest contributors to global warming. They are using direct air capture.

Storing of Carbon or sequestration has been in seen as one of the possible solutions which help in rising in atmospheric carbon dioxide.

"The carbon dioxide generated via direct air capture can be combined with sequestration for carbon removal, or it can enable the production of carbon-neutral hydrocarbons, which is a way to take low-priced carbon-free power sources like solar or wind and channel them into fuels that can be used to decarbonize the transportation sector".

Carbon Engineering have been running a pilot plant since 2015, and now harvest about a ton of carbon a day.




Carbon dioxide can be sucked from the air by giant fans with an aqueous solution.

The demonstration facility is already producing small amounts of synthetic fuels. Carbon Engineering proudly says that cutting the costs to such an extent is a "real step forward".

In 2011, a pair of influential papers all but sounded the death knell for direct air capture, concluding that the approach would cost almost an order of magnitude more than capturing the greenhouse gas from power-plant stacks.

In an interview this week, Herzog complimented the detailed analysis in the new study, but said he remains skeptical of some of its financial assumptions.

The company envisions building large-scale plants near wind and solar facilities, which will provide clean energy to enable the carbon capture process, he said. That could drive a market for DAC plants that would likely drive costs down further, Oldham says. "That's the design choice we made". The H2 is then combined with Carbon dioxide to make liquid hydrocarbons using conventional chemical engineering technology. Released in a peer-reviewed paper, CE's breakthroughs in Direct Air Capture (DAC) technology demonstrate, for the first time, a scalable and cost-effective solution for removing Carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. These fuels include gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel. The findings are based on three years' research from CE's pilot plant located in Squamish, B.C. But it's key to Carbon Engineering's business: It means the company can produce carbon-neutral hydrocarbons. "We're ready to build a much larger plant". Climate scientists say countries will need to drop Carbon dioxide emissions to near zero by midcentury and then remove more Carbon dioxide than they emit, if the planet is to avoid a catastrophic 2°C warming. "By making the fuel carbon neutral, the entire transportation sector can become carbon neutral without changing all of the infrastructure - we don't all have to get a new auto, we don't have to replace every gas station with an electric grid for charging". The company claims that its scaled-up air-to-fuel system would be able to produce gasoline at about $1 per liter ($3.80 per gallon). Numerous so-called negative emissions technologies exist, including growing perennial plants and trees to make biofuels, and sequestering carbon in soils.


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