Technology 2 min read

Researchers Develop New Way of Removing CO2 in the Air

A team of MIT researchers has developed a new way of removing CO2 in the atmosphere. This time, the process will be cheaper and more efficient.

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Engineers at MIT have developed a new way of removing CO2 from the air. What’s more, the process could remove the greenhouse gas at any virtually any concentration level, whether its from fossil emissions or open air.

In the battle against climate change, various researchers have invented new ways of reducing the carbon dioxide in the air. While some converted the gas into pure liquid fuel, others developed a porous material to capture the gas molecules.

The engineers at MIT, on the other hand, developed a method to remove the gas from the air altogether.

To be clear, researchers have explored a similar CO2 removal method in the past. However, these methods were more pricey and less efficient compared with the new process.

The new technique is based on passing air through a stack of charged electrochemical plates. Here is how it works.

A Cheap and Efficient Way Of Removing CO2 From Air

The researchers developed a device that’s essentially a specialized battery with electrodes.

It absorbs CO2 from air  – or any other gas – stream that passes over these electrodes when the device is being charged up. Conversely, the battery releases the gas as it discharges.

During operation, the device alternates between charging and discharging. So, the engineers feed fresh air into the system during the charge cycle, and it blows out concentrated carbon dioxide in the discharge cycle.

Also, you should know that the new CO2 removal system works at room temperature and pressure. MIT postdoc, who developed the work during his Ph.D., Sahag Voskian described the process as revolutionary.

Voskian noted:

“All of this is at ambient conditions — there’s no need for thermal, pressure, or chemical input. It’s just these very thin sheets, with both surfaces active, that can be stacked in a box and connected to a source of electricity.”

Now, the researchers are looking to commercialize the process, and they’ve set up a company called Vedox to do that. According to Voskian, the pilot-scale plant could be ready within the next few years.

The researcher also points out how easy it is to scale the system up. “If you want more capacity, you just need to make more electrodes,” he says.

Read More: A Single AI’s Carbon Emission is Nearly 5x Greater Than a Car

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Sumbo Bello

Sumbo Bello is a creative writer who enjoys creating data-driven content for news sites. In his spare time, he plays basketball and listens to Coldplay.

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    Varun Hirawat October 28 at 7:05 pm GMT

    While it seems a great idea to efficiently absorb co2 from the atmosphere, I hope that the reserchers are considering the fact that co2 is also a gas that is important for plants to breathe and thrive. Careful!

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