A chemical reaction that turns carbon dioxide into a solid and on the top of it, releases energy, has been discovered by a Michigan Technological University researcher and could revolutionize how we sequester the powerful greenhouse gas to our advantage.
So far, people trying to put CO2 molecules together did it by adding energy, which had usually been taken from more fossil fuels, so more carbon dioxide was used.
Yun Hang Hu, on the other hand, discovered that reacting carbon dioxide with Li3N (lithium nitride) results in amorphous carbon nitride (C3N4), which could be used as a semiconductor in solar cells, for example, and lithium cyanamide (Li2CN2), which can be used in making agricultural fertilizers.
As if this wasn’t enough, the miracle reaction releases extra energy in huge amounts. A gram of lithium nitride reacting with CO2 at 330 degrees Celsius produces so much energy that the temperature of the mixture almost instantly jumps to 1,000 degrees Celsius – enough to melt mostly anything in its path.
I suspect this reaction won’t remain unnoticed by the scientific community and by those who dedicated their entire life to designing carbon sequestration systems. We could eventually add lithium nitride to our cars and give them more power with the help of the carbon dioxide they emit, as we also have the proper temperature to do that.
Is that nice or what?