SMU Professor Invents A Greener Co2 Catcher
April 12th, 2012
Cleaner solvent-based scrubber technology developed at Saint Mary’s University is being licensed by GreenCentre Canada.
Invented by chemistry professor Jason Clyburne, the scrubber system is based on a solvent formulation that is much less volatile and corrosive than traditional solvent systems, uses less energy and fewer materials, and captures significantly larger amounts of carbon dioxide.
CO2 emissions from the burning of coal and other industrial processes continue to be a significant global environmental challenge.
But current solvent scrubber methods used to capture CO2 are expensive, often require a significant amount of energy and typically involve the use of solvents that can pose additional environmental risks.
Clyburne was travelling Thursday and couldn’t be reached for comment.
But according to Saint Mary’s, the technology involves the use of specialized compounds dubbed ionic liquids that trap CO2 from waste streams. The CO2 can be separated from the liquid and stored, allowing the liquid to be recycled to remove more CO2.
GreenCentre officials in Kingston, Ont., couldn’t be reached for comment on the scrubber technology’s potential commercial applications.
Based at Queens University, GreenCentre brings together academic researchers and industry partners to develop cleaner and less energy-intensive alternatives to traditional chemical products and manufacturing processes.
Funded by the Ontario and federal governments, GreenCentre offers a full range of services to develop early-stage technologies that meet specific industrial needs.
GreenCentre sponsored Clyburne’s research with a $25,000 grant that he leveraged into an additional $270,000 in research funding.