Watch the conversion of captured CO2 to solid carbonS. Himmelstein | January 20, 2022
An efficient route for capturing carbon dioxide and converting it to solid carbon has been devised by researchers in Australia to accelerate the decarbonization of cement, steel and other heavy industries.
The sustainable alternative to CO2 compression and underground injection approaches is based on previous research that used liquid metals as a catalyst. The new conversion method starts with heating gallium-based liquid metal to about 100° C to 120° C, followed by injection of CO2. As gas bubbles form and rise up through the liquid metal column, gas molecules are reduced and are converted into solid carbon flakes that are easily retrieved at the top of the system.
The relatively low temperature process described in Energy & Environmental Science was demonstrated to yield 319 μmol/hour of carbon at 200° C and to support CO2 activation and carbon production even at room temperature.
The researchers from RMIT University, University of Melbourne and Deakin University next plan to collaborate with environmental technology company ABR to scale up the proof-of-concept to a modularized prototype the size of a shipping container. Potential applications for the converted carbon, including in construction materials, will also be studied.