Carbon capture has been touted as an essential tool for avoiding catastrophic climate change. Capable to both reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to potentially even reverse their buildup in the atmosphere, scientists are increasingly investigating methods of capturing the carbon dioxide that’s emitted by industrial smokestacks. Now, researchers have developed a new foam that can help make this process more sustainable and cost-effective.
Developed by scientists in Sweden, the solid foam-style substance consists of tiny zeolite particles – minerals known for their absorbent properties – combined with gelatine and cellulose. The researchers claim this new material is cheap and absorbs CO2 extremely well.
As of now, carbon capture typically uses a solution that’s related to ammonia to absorb the CO2. The solution is heavy and not environmentally friendly. With the new foamy material, however, the process could be sustainable and less difficult.
What’s more, apart from being extremely lightweight and stable, the material’s solidity allows for an easier and more efficient process of separation from other byproducts after capturing the harmful gases.