Despite the fact that carbon capture and storage – used for cutting emissions from power stations – is a very expensive technology, it is but crucial to set up such projects on a more frequent basis. A Melbourne University chemical engineer Colin Scholes proposes the use of a low-cost, high tech membrane for lowering down the cost of CCS technology. Scholes has already tested the membrane with real flue gas at brown coal power stations in Victoria’s La Trobe Valley for assessing its robustness. He has put his membranes on maiden display at Fresh Science, a communication boot camp for budding scientists, held at the Melbourne Museum.
The membrane material is specifically designed to separate CO2 from other molecules. It acts like a filter and is much more efficient than existing technology. We are hoping these membranes will become an important part of a carbon capture and storage strategy which will cut emissions from power stations by up to 90 per cent.
The Cooperative Research Centre for Greenhouse Gas Technologies supports his work.