Removing CO2 from the Air? (aside from Calcium Hydroxide)

Discussion in 'Chemistry' started by kwhilborn, Apr 11, 2007.

  1. Nasor Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    6,221
    Let's put it this way: a fully grown redwood tree might mass around 1000 tons. Which means that you would need 24 million new fully grown redwood trees every year to simply counter the amount of carbon that we are currenty putting out, let alone actually reduce the amount in the atmosphere. The mass of ferns, shrubs, or whatever else people might be able to grow on their roof is trivial compared to the mass of carbon in the atmosphere.
     
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  3. Roman Banned Banned

    Messages:
    11,560
    It would be FAR cheaper to put part of the third world on welfare and turn their land back into rainforest than produce vast amounts of chemical hydroxide, then trying to figure out where to store it.
     
  4. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  5. Roman Banned Banned

    Messages:
    11,560
    There is an estimated 1,800 billion tons of biomass of all terrestial ecosystems.

    Increasing biomass by 1 or 2% wouldn't be that difficult.
     
  6. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  7. kwhilborn Banned Banned

    Messages:
    2,088
    O.K. Debating whether science is required is off topic.

    What if we confined the air into threads, and used plates (positive/negative) to deflect and divert the problematic diatomic atoms.

    We would still have to sequester the carbon from the target area, but we might be able to separate the problem air first. Yadda yadda. saving the treatment of 99.99% of the air

    Is this a possibility? I have not seen anyone with this type of pre-sorting ideas (patent pending).

    Would exciting the atoms help or hinder?

    I am kind of thinking to align the atoms poles first with magnets, and then have ..... anyways. There is a decent proposal.

    Or is there another way to use the atomic differences. i.e. mass, lower energy, etc. to otherwise filter out the diatomic particles?

    Please tell me I'm off my rocker before I start renting equipment.lol
     
  8. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    10,296
    Hello again, kwhilborn,

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!



    First a very minor correction: You've misued the term 'diatomic atoms' - there's no such thing. You probably mean diatomic molecules but that still doesn't apply to CO2. The only elements that form diatomic molecules are hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and the halogens (F, Cl, Br, and I). And yes, I have a major background in chemistry.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!



    Now, back to your topic.

    No, the reason it isn't being done and most probably never will is because it would be both very expensive and not efficent at all. The Co2 molecule cannot be polarized as you are thinking independently of other air molecules. Ozone is an example of one that's done easily - but we don't wish to get rid of oxygen, do we?

    Perhaps you're thinking of some sort of molecular sieve, such as the membranes used to partially desalinate sea water. Or centifuges as are used in the enrichment of uraniun. But both of those are the expensive, slow things I was just talking about. Not at all practical, sorry.
     
  9. MetaKron Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,502
    A lot of different kinds of plants can be grown and then plowed under. This sequesters carbon and builds soil.
     
  10. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    10,296
    Something tells me you don't understand the word "sequester" because that only stores it for a while until the natural flora and fauna in the soil break it down and release it again. No solution in THAT scheme.
     
  11. kwhilborn Banned Banned

    Messages:
    2,088
    Thanks for setting me straight. I am trying to get it.

    So it would not be possible that oxygen and co2 could be defracted to individual levels via polarity?

    Or any ideas that might function towards a high speed separation.

    I was not looking for a high degree of accuracy, but with repeated processing, etc.

    I think if anyone could think of a way to do something similar, it could be the invention of the century.

    any hope?
     
  12. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    10,296
    You are very welcome, kwhilborn. I can easily see that you are serious about this and that you're making an honest effort with it. I'm always glad to help someone like you - as opposed to the many "know-nothings-say-a-lot" that this place is so full of.

    No, there just aren't principles that one could employ to do any of that on an effective basis. Several things could be done but my algae idea would remove the CO2 at a thousand times the rate and do it very cheaply.

    I didn't go into great detail about it but it's very workable. And no, there would be no mosquito problem at all becasue the material would be removed continously and any mosquito larve present would just be swept right along with it since they require a minimum of five days to develop under the most ideal conditions.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!



    There are also other water plants that could be used. The water hychanth is another good one and it's also well known for removing any toxic heavy metals that might be present. And as anyone in Florida can tell you, it grows VERY fast and can also be removed continously.

    Vegetation is the way to go, but not in the simplistic forms some here have suggested, Those ideas wouldn't even begin to make a small dent in the problem. For one thing, land is already at a premium and there is less and less of it available every single day. That's not going to change, either.
     
  13. grover Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    715
    Building fake trees? What's wrong with using real ones? Oh, yeah if you say trees are good you're a tree-hugger.
     
  14. MetaKron Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,502
    Something tells me that you don't understand any words because peat bogs are like this and so is topsoil, and the age of the carbon sequestered "temporarily" in those places runs to thousands of years.
     
  15. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    23,198
    Certainly true that vegetation (algae included) can remove carbon (as CO2) from the air much more economically than any man-made device, but one must bury it or in some way reduce its decay and return of CO2 to the air.

    An alternative is to (when the biotechnology permits) use the vegetation to make "cellulose alcohol." This alcohol, when burned as fuel in you car etc, will of course also returns the CO2 to the air, just as the decaying vegetation would, but the displacement of fossil fuels is a big reduction in the release of currently well sequester carbon (in oil) to the air. Thus, producing alcohol, reducing the cost of driving while reducing the release of fossil fuel is the way to go. (I suspect that to bury a ton of vegitation carbon will cost about half as much as extracting a ton of fossil carbon in oil and transport of it to the end user. Thus, the economics, considering the cost of water and land for the algae pond does not seem good to me, but I am only guessing.)

    Currently sugar cane is the best vegetation source of the alcohol. It can already achieve the reduction of fossil carbon release and lower the cost of driving your car. If 'cellulous Alcohol" every does become economically viable (there remains considerable doubt that it will in the next decade or two at least) then the infrastructure will already exist (I.e. your local "gas" station will have a pump for alcohol. All already do in Brazil, but Brazil has a 30+ year head start on the US in the alcohol as car fuel technology.)

    Land for growing cane is not in short supply only a few percent of the land that is already in pasture is being used. In many areas, the critical limit is water. Thus large ponds full of algae (evaporating under the strong sun need for rapid algae growth) is not feasible - a land crop is more economical and feasible as only the evaporative loss thru the leaves exists. Perhaps some bio engineering of sugar cane plant can give it the same wax coating hat is found on cactus to reduce this loss and even desert land could be used (not much water for algae there!)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 14, 2007
  16. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    10,296
    Wrong again. I made no mention of peat bogs because that's correct - unless it's harvested for fuel. But organic matter in topsoil does NOT stay in place forever. Undoubtedly, you have no idea just how active the microbes in topsoil are. If what you said was even remotely accurate plants couldn't grow in it because all the nutrients it contains would be locked away for thousands of years also. Just plain silly.
     
  17. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    10,296
    Evidently, you only saw my last post on that subject and missed the first because I also proposed it be stored deep underground in abandoned salt mines. There are lots of those available world-wide and they provide the ideal storage space.

    So I still maintain that it would be - by far - the least expensive and most practical solution.
     
  18. MetaKron Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,502
    You're on IGNORE.
     
  19. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    10,296
    Yea!!! I finally accompished something positive with the village idi..., well, you know what.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    He just couldn't stand the truth - in this case being that he knew nothing at all about soil chemistry.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
  20. kwhilborn Banned Banned

    Messages:
    2,088
    It already is highly used process with natural gas, they mix absorbents in the air, so this is the working model that needs to be improved upon.

    The absorbent solution may not be the best when we are dealing with air environments. As suggested by READ ONLY, algae could be used in an oxygen setting.

    "how about very slow moving streams of algae within extremely long air tunnels." I just know there must be better methods than obsorption.
     
  21. Pete It's not rocket surgery Moderator

    Messages:
    10,166
    Dumping bales of organic waste (eg spent stalks from grain crops) into the ocean in alluvial fans where they will be quickly covered in silt is another useful idea.
     
  22. kwhilborn Banned Banned

    Messages:
    2,088
    Also forgot to mention, the Algae would convert the co2 into food energy, and would be a cheap way to grow food fast, for emergency relief. So the spent algae could solve starvation problems. There is also a university who is growing triple the amount of catfish in a algae pond environment, as opposed to regular fish farming. TRIPLE! Fertilizing potentials. There is also an incredible amount of possibilitieas as Algae as a biofuel, the obstacles in its way right now is its unavailability as opposed to corn. The growth of which is hampered by lacks of light, food, etc. We would be supplying the algae with as much Co2 as they "could dream of"(figurative). I wonder what a pound of Algae is worth. Hmmm.

    So you could clean the co2 from air, grow food/fuel at the same time.

    So save the world in two ways at once. lol. Good idea READ ONLY.

    Can't wait for that Algaeburger. MMmmm. lol. I guess it beats not eating though.

    I wonder what the math would look like, (and I am not doing it today)
    on a wind production facilties air intake into increasingly smaller sectioned tunnels of algae, how much algae would be required to reduce the co2 by over 50%.

    They could be marketted as food production facilities to countries who don't give in to environmental aid.

    real estate would be a prime concern, so masking size with verticle ducts, etc. I guess I'll post back here when I've done some math.

    Include good search terms in your answers, because this idea deserves to be looked at on google. seriously.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2007
  23. MetaKron Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,502
    Algae already grows as fast as it possibly can and becomes part of the food chain in any waterway or body of water. Things eat it and it runs out of essential nutrients like phosphates. This is part of how water is cleansed. Any contaminant is something that some life form eats, or it becomes part of the mud on the bottom.
     

Share This Page