Texas A&M innovates direct air capture of CO2

08 September 2021

The Texas A&M Energy Institute and AIR TO EARTH® are pleased to announce a partnership to develop new materials and methods to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and reduce the impacts of anthropogenic climate change.

As the world looks to reduce the emissions of greenhouse gases and identify ways to capture, utilize and store carbon dioxide, investment in emerging climate technologies is urgently needed. One such promising technology involves the extraction of carbon dioxide directly from the air, also called direct air capture (DAC). This eminently scalable carbon removal pathway involves moving significant volumes of air through specialized materials to selectively separate out carbon dioxide for subsequent use or storage. For DAC to be included in the world's carbon removal portfolio, technology innovation is needed to drive down costs.

The Texas A&M Energy Institute and AIR TO EARTH® will modify or design new state-of-the-art materials, called chemical sorbents, which will ideally be able to be produced at low costs, provide durable performance, and efficiently capture carbon dioxide from ambient air. Focusing on porous polymer networks (PPNs), which show great promise for the technological feasibility and driving down the costs of DAC, the project will seek to optimize the materials, processes, and technologies that will eventually lead to an efficient, cost-effective full-scale DAC operation. In addition, the Texas A&M Energy Institute and AIR TO EARTH® will seek to optimize airflow hydraulics and carbon dioxide capture kinetics by simulating systems and methods designed to improve performance and lower the costs and energy requirements of DAC.

"Carbon capture, utilization, storage, and sequestration constitutes one of the key challenges that the world is facing toward a sustainable future," said Stratos Pistikopoulos, the director of the Texas A&M Energy Institute and a professor of chemical engineering. "Capturing CO2 from air, the focus of our joint project between the Texas A&M Energy Institute and AIR TO EARTH®, is an important building block in such a decarbonization effort."

Courtesy of AIR TO EARTH.