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28 May 2024

Northwestern University researchers develop new catalyst which could have a serious impact on CO2

Amy Power
Northwestern University researchers develop new catalyst which could have a serious impact on CO2

Researchers from the Northwestern University in Illinois, have developed a new kind of catalyst, which has shown potential to ‘destroy’ carbon dioxide gas. This catalyst has been manufactured from an inexpensive, abundant metal and common table sugar.

So far, the tests that have been performed on carbon dioxide, using the catalyst, have shown a successful conversion rate of carbon dioxide to carbon monoxide, which is an important building block when it comes to producing a variety of useful chemicals. One example of carbon monoxide’s use, is that when hydrogen is involved in the reaction, the CO2 and hydrogen convert into synthesis gas. This product is a very valuable precursor when it comes to producing fuels which might have potential in the search for finding an alternative to gasoline.

One method for tackling global climate change crisis which has been effective recently, is post-combustion carbon capture, which has been made possible through recent advances within carbon capture technologies. However, one difficulty which is presented with this method, is handling the captured carbon. Therefore, the idea of converting CO2 into a more valuable product, in order to get rid of the potent greenhouse gas, through the use of this catalyst, could be and has so far been shown to be, an excellent solution to this issue.

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