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Carbon capture

Cheap polymer promises to revolutionise carbon capture and storage

BusinessGreen staff 10

Jan 2012

Scientists in the US claim to have found a cheaper and easier way to remove carbon dioxide from industrial smokestacks, cars and domestic heaters, which account for around half of total manmade CO2 emissions.

A paper published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society last week claims to show the highest carbon dioxide removal rates ever reported for the type of humid air that can pose difficulties for other CCS technologies. Researchers claim that using solid materials based on polyethylenimine, a readily available and inexpensive polymeric material, may overcome the huge cost problems that have limited deployment of carbon capture technology to date.

he International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that by 2035 there will have to be 1,500 large-scale projects around the world to keep global temperature rise below 2º Celsius this century, but so far deployment of the technology has been hampered by technical and cost concerns.

In tests the researchers at the University of Southern California, including chemistry Nobel Laureate George Olah, found that the new polymer offers a cost effective means of capturing relatively large quantities of CO2. The trials also demonstrated that the material can be recycled and reused many times over without losing efficiency, paving the way for the captured CO2 to be reused to make other substances.

The paper says the polymer could be useful in closed environments such as submarines, or deployed to capture CO2 from smokestacks. It adds that the process could also be used out in the open atmosphere, where it could clean up carbon dioxide pollution from small point sources such as cars or home heaters.

Source: http://www.businessgreen.com/bg/news/2136459/cheap-polymer-promises-revolutionise-carbon-capture-storage

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