A whole new inexpensive and easy-to-use way to capture carbon from the atmosphere
Research continues to find ways to capture carbon dioxide from the air. HAS UC Berkeleychemists have developed a simple and very inexpensive method to do so, and it is based on the use of the polymer called melamine. This last one is good cheaper than usual metal-organic frameworkswhich will allow a wide variety of applications.
With regard to the capture of carbon dioxide from the air, the metallo-organic frameworks or MOF are among the most promising. UC Berkeley researchers created MOFs in 2015, and since then they have been able to improve the technology and make it more efficient. But for the carbon dioxide capture method to be more widely deployed, it needs to be very simple and very inexpensive.
According to Professor Jeffrey Reimer, one of the authors of the new study, they wanted material derived from sources that were inexpensive and easy to obtain. So they decided to start with melamine.
The manufacturing process
Melamine is a common material and a base material for the manufacture of various objects such as thermosetting plastics, laminates, or Formica kitchen worktops. It costs around 39 euros per ton.
During their study, the scientists combined melamine with formaldehyde and cyanuric acid. They then used a 3-7 day condensation polymerization technique, followed by an ultrasonic bath and a cleaning process to create nano-porous networks of stabilized melamine.
According to the researchers, the networks obtained showed an adsorption capacity of 1.82 millimoles of CO2 per gram at atmospheric pressure levels. Adsorption was completed within minutes and “extraordinary cycle stability and low regeneration energy” was observed. Tests showed that the material captured CO2 at a temperature of 40°C and released it at a temperature of 80°C.
This is just the beginning
According to the explanations of the researchers, these first nano-porous networks of melamine are as effective as the first MOFs they created. But they have definite potential for improvements.
The problem that persists with the use of melamine is that the production of this material itself produces carbon dioxide. However, scientists believe that this material could have many applications in the field of carbon capture. According to Haiyan Mao, postdoctoral researcher at UBC and first author of the study, they hope to design an accessory to capture car exhaustor even a accessory for filtering CO2 in buildingsand even a coating that can be applied to the surface of objects.