Feeds

Soak up CO2 with sponges, says CSIRO

A football field in a gram

New hybrid storage solutions

Australian science outfit the CSIRO is claiming a win, demonstrating a material it says offers a new approach to carbon capture: a sponge.

The idea of the “sponge” – really a material called a metal-organic framework – is very straightforward. It absorbs gases at the point of release, such as capturing flue gases in a power station, and releases captured CO2 on exposure to sunlight. If it can be scaled up, that means the gases can be captured in one place and released in a safe environment (for example, the storage facility) somewhere else.

In its release, the CSIRO explains that the MOF solves one of the challenges of carbon capture. Current technologies such as amine fluids, which capture flue gases quite efficiently, have to be heated to release the gases, a process the science agency says can use as much as 30 percent of a generator’s capacity.

The MOFs eliminate the “parasitic energy load of adsorbent regeneration”, because they release the as much as 64 percent of the captured carbon immediately on exposure to ultraviolet light.

Monash University’s Richelle Lyndon worked in the CSIRO team under Dr Matthew Hill, and is lead author of a paper (abstract) in Angewandte Chemie. She explains that the MOFs “are impregnated with light-responsive azobenzene molecules which react to UV light and trigger the release of CO2.

“It is this reaction, and the material's ability to bend and flex, which makes the material we have created so unique,” she said.

The other important aspect of the MOFs is their internal structure: they have “the surface area of a football field in one gram”, giving the material a high absorption capacity relative to its weight.

As well as the CSIRO and Monash, the development of the materials used the powder diffraction beamline at the Australian Synchrotron. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Boffins: Behold the SILICON CHEAPNESS of our tiny, radio-signal-munching IoT sensor
Single ant-sized Stanford chip combines radio, 'puter, antenna
Thought that last dinosaur was BIG? This one's bloody ENORMOUS
Weighed several adult elephants, contend boffins
TROUT and EELS in SINISTER PACT to RULE the oceans
Slimy chums form deadly alliance to sweep seas
Drones swarm over bearded Brit billionaire's island getaway
Just to take lovely pictures though, after Richard Branson invests in 3D Robotics
Chelyabinsk-sized SURPRISE asteroid to skim Earth, satnav birds
Space rock appears out of nowhere, buzzes planet on Sunday
California blue whale numbers soar to historical levels, say boffins
Still far too many of them being struck by US ships, mind
City hidden beneath England's Stonehenge had HUMAN ABATTOIR. And a pub
Boozed-up ancients drank beer before tearing corpses apart
'Duck face' selfie in SPAAAACE: Rosetta's snap with bird comet
Probe prepares to make first landing on fast-moving rock
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.