The Journal of the American Chemical Society rhas ecently witnessed the publication of a new study stating that, thanks to a team of researchers working with the University of Melbourne, capturing and storing carbon dioxide molecules could soon be both an easier and a cheaper thing to do.Given the fact that removing carbon dioxide molecules from the atmosphere is of utmost importance if human society is to push for a cleaner future, this comes as good news indeed.
The working principles behind this new method of capturing and storing carbon are pretty straightforward and easy to comprehend.
Rather than “suck in” air and then try to separate the carbon dioxide molecules from other chemical compounds, it would be best to carry out the cleaning operation by capturing and storing CO2 alone.
According to the official website for the University of Melbourne, this can be easily done with the help of so-called molecular trapdoors.
Professor Paul Webley explains that, “The technology works on the principle of the material acting like a trap-door that only allows certain molecules to enter, he said.”
Furthermore, “Because the process allows only carbon dioxide molecules to be captured, it will reduce the cost and energy required for separating carbon dioxide.”
As professor Webley puts it, it may very well be that global industries cannot go green overnight, but this does not change the fact that efforts can and should be made towards some sort of damage control in terms of their impact on the environment.
“We have a new material that is able to separate carbon, dioxide from any given stream such as power stations and from natural gas sources. While we can’t change industry in a hurry, we have provided a viable bridging solution,” he argues.
Seeing how atmospheric CO2 fuels phenomena such as climate change and global warming, it need not come as such a big surprise that researchers are constantly trying to develop and perfect means of trapping and storing it.
Interesting enough, oil and gas company Shell has recently decided to invest in a carbon capture and storage project that is intended to diminish the ecological footprint of its operations in Canada.