Coal power station emissions might be drastically reduced by a new material that adsorbs huge amounts of carbon dioxide and releases it when exposed to sunlight.
In February, the journal Angewandte Chemie, published a study by Monash University and CSIRO scientists. The study examines the researchers’ discovery of a photosensitive metal organic framework (MOF). These are a class of materials revered for their capacity to store gasses.
Releasing stored carbon through by using sunlight allows MOF to circumnavigate the usual issues, such as inefficiency and cost, that plague energy-intensive methods of carbon capture. This allows the MOF to act as a would be sponge that soaks up coal emissions.
The MOF can release the adsorbed carbon dioxide when irradiated with light found in sunlight.
MOF has an affinity for carbon dioxide, and the molecules that are light-responsive can be combined with other MOFs. If harnessed, this affinity will ultimately make the release technology appropriate for other gases.
This discovery may revolutionize emissions reducing technology, and experts are calling it a step-change in carbon capture technologies.
Experts now plan to optimize MOF in order to increase the efficiency of CO2 to levels suitable for an industrial environment.