Potential carbon capture role for new CO2 absorbing material

Jun 12, 2012
Potential carbon capture role for new CO2 absorbing material

(Phys.org) -- A novel porous material that has unique carbon dioxide adsorption properties has been developed through research led by The University of Nottingham.

The findings, published in the prestigious peer-reviewed journal , form part of ongoing efforts to develop for gas and could have an impact in the advancement of new carbon capture products for reducing emissions from fossil fuel processes.

It focuses on the metal organic framework NOTT-202a, which has a unique honeycomb-like structural arrangement and can be considered to represent an entirely new class of .

Most importantly, the material structure allows selective adsorption of carbon dioxide — while other gases such as nitrogen, methane and hydrogen can pass back through, the remains trapped in the materials nanopores, even at low temperatures.

Unique material

Lead researcher Professor Martin Schröder, in the University’s School of Chemistry, said: “The unique defect structure of this new material shows can be correlated directly to its gas adsorption properties. Detailed analyses via structure determination and computational modelling have been critical in determining and rationalising the structure and function of this material.”

The research team — which is included Dr Sihai Yang, Professor Alexander Blake, Professor Neil Champness and Dr Elena Bichoutskaia at Nottingham — collaborated on the project with colleagues at the University of Newcastle and Diamond Light Source and STFC Daresbury Laboratory.

NOTT-202a consists of a tetra-carboxylate ligands — a like structure made of a series of molecules or ions bound to a central metal atom — and filled with indium metal centres. This forms a novel structure consisting of two interlocked frameworks.

Innovative solutions

State-of-the-art X-ray powder diffraction measurements at Diamond Light Source and advanced computer modelling were used to probe and gain insight into the unique carbon dioxide capturing properties of the material.

The study has been funded by the ERC Advanced Grant COORDSPACE and by an EPSRC Programme Grant ChemEnSus aimed at applying coordination chemistry to the generation of new multi-functional porous materials that could provide innovative solutions for key issues around environmental and chemical sustainability.

These projects incorporate multi-disciplinary collaborations across chemistry, physics and materials science, and aim to develop new materials that could have application in gas storage, sieving and purification, carbon capture, chemical reactivity and sensing.

Explore further: New process can convert human-generated waste into fuel in space

Related Stories

Flexibility: The key to carbon capture

Aug 12, 2011

From power plants that capture their own carbon dioxide emissions to vehicles powered by hydrogen, clean energy applications often demand materials that can selectively adsorb large volumes of harmful gases. ...

Miniature Gas Tank

Jan 28, 2005

Porous networks of organic Van der Waals crystals can selectively store methane and carbon dioxide Washing powders are generally known to consist partially of inorganic zeolites. These aluminosilicates form porous structure ...

Entangled frameworks limber up

Sep 20, 2010

The degree of interconnectivity of molecular frameworks in microporous materials influences their structural flexibility and gas sorption

Crystal sponges excel at sopping up CO2

Dec 01, 2005

Since the Industrial Revolution, levels of carbon dioxide---a major contributor to the greenhouse effect---have been on the rise, prompting scientists to search for ways of counteracting the trend. One of the main strategies ...

Recommended for you

Electronic switches on the molecular scale

Nov 25, 2014

A molecular electronic switch is a junction created from individual molecules that can alternate between two or more stable states, making the switch act as a conductor or an insulator. These switches show ...

Mimicking photosynthesis with man-made leaves

Nov 25, 2014

Scientists have long been trying to emulate the way in which plants harvest energy from the sun through photosynthesis. Plants are able to absorb photons from even weak sunlight using light antennae made ...

User comments : 3

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

EveyHammond
2.3 / 5 (3) Jun 12, 2012
Carbon dioxide absorbing materials already exist and have for millions of years. They are called plants. We need more of them. Science should stop searching for the band-aid and start suturing the wound.
Parsec
5 / 5 (2) Jun 12, 2012
Carbon dioxide absorbing materials already exist and have for millions of years. They are called plants. We need more of them. Science should stop searching for the band-aid and start suturing the wound.

Give me a break. That is like saying we already know how to walk so we should stop looking for more efficient ways to move materials from point to point.

A more serious consideration is the high cost and low availability of Indium. This looks like a solution that would be so expensive it would only be useful for highly specialized applications.
WesD
4 / 5 (1) Jun 12, 2012
Carbon dioxide absorbing materials already exist and have for millions of years. They are called plants. We need more of them. Science should stop searching for the band-aid and start suturing the wound.


You can't put a plant on top of an exhaust stack. We won't be off of fossil fuels for decades, and these temporary fixes are needed in the mean time. There is billions of dollars already dedicated to new energy sources, so it isn't as if that problem is being ignored. Would you not put a band-aid on a wound as it healed over time?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.