Researchers investigate sustainable technologies for CO2 removal from the atmosphere


Around the world, several projects are underway to devise a method to capture CO2 from the atmosphere to fight climate change. In fact, most of the currently used techniques use toxic solvents to capture CO2 from the atmosphere. However, electrochemical techniques that can function on sustainable electricity are now increasingly becoming available.

In a bid for this, a research group at TU Delft along with some research associates carried out a study to investigate these sustainable technologies for CO2 removal and carried out a comparison for the first time. Besides this, the researchers also explained which methods have the potential that can enable large-scale removal of C02 to be possible.

The paper on the research was recently published in Energy & Environmental Science.

Method to remove CO2 from decentralized sources key objective of research

“Importantly, the newly devised techniques seem to be an ideal solution to combat climate change, however, CO2 removal from the atmosphere is not an easy task. Meanwhile, there are various scenarios under which CO2 can be captured. At its basic, CO2 can be captured from one of its major source, but, it is also important to be able to trap CO2 from sources of decentralized emission points. This is because power plants and industrial units are largely responsible for a certain percentage of carbon released in the atmosphere. Decentralized sources such as agricultural industries, cars, heating and aircraft together account for 40% of CO2 emissions in the atmosphere,” explains the lead researcher.

Meanwhile, several techniques have been developed to capture both centralized and decentralized CO2, however, particularly for decentralized capture, a few energy-efficient clean methods are available.

One of the possible clean solution for capture of decentralized CO2 is provided by electrochemical routes, wherein the technique enables pH of a solution to be adapted CO2 to be concentrated.

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