Coal is one of the most common resources on the planet. The problem is that its extraction is expensive and destroys the natural environment. Scientists from George Washington University are working on a way to extract carbon from the air, specifically CO2.

A team of scientists is working on a project that can revolutionize greenhouse gases and pollutant emissions while delivering coal. They succeeded in creating a method of extracting it from the air, to some extent reminiscent of the electrolysis we learned in school. Instead of using two electrodes inserted into the water, the scientists’ method uses a combination of molten lithium carbonate and lithium oxide.

When both components come together, they begin to extract CO2 efficiently from the air, and pure carbon is deposited on the electrodes. Thanks to the refinement of the method, carbon nanofibres can be formed in a variety of shapes, from which it is theoretically possible to build almost anything. And thanks to the use of solar energy to power this process, the method is also very cheap, so the scientists hope that in the future it can help significantly reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

Steven Mills

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