Jan 052012
 

These inexpensive materials achieved some of the highest carbon dioxide removal rates ever reported

 
Scientists are reporting discovery of an improved way to remove carbon dioxide — the major greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming — from smokestacks and other sources, including the atmosphere. Their report on the process, which achieves some of the highest carbon dioxide removal capacity ever reported for real-world conditions where the air contains moisture, appears in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.

Alain Goeppert, G. K. Surya Prakash, chemistry Nobel Laureate George A. Olah and colleagues explain that controlling emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) is one of the biggest challenges facing humanity in the 21st century. They point out that existing methods for removing carbon dioxide from smokestacks and other sources, including the atmosphere, are energy intensive, don’t work well and have other drawbacks. In an effort to overcome such obstacles, the group turned to solid materials based on polyethylenimine, a readily available and inexpensive polymeric material.

Their tests showed that these inexpensive materials achieved some of the highest carbon dioxide removal rates ever reported for humid air, under conditions that stymie other related materials.

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