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US Department of Energy awards US$13.5m for Direct Air Capture research

The US Department of Energy (DOE) has recently announced US$13.5 million for three national laboratory-led research efforts aimed at achieving breakthroughs in the effort to capture carbon dioxide (CO2) from ambient air.
“Direct Air Capture (DAC) holds promise as an emerging technology with the potential to improve the environment while expanding sources of energy through the conversion of carbon dioxide to fuels and other chemicals,” said Dr Chris Fall, Director of DOE’s Office of Science.

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The US Department of Energy (DOE) has recently announced US$13.5 million for three national laboratory-led research efforts aimed at achieving breakthroughs to capture carbon dioxide (CO2 )using the Direct Air Capture (DAC) pathways.

The three projects were selected by competitive peer review under a DOE Laboratory Announcement, sponsored by the Office of Basic Energy Sciences (BES) within DOE’s Office of Science. Each of the three projects focuses on a different major approach to carbon capture.

  • A team led by DOE’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) in Richland, Washington (WA) will investigate electrochemical approaches;
  • A team led by DOE’s Argonne National Laboratory in Lemont, Illinois (IL) will focus on photochemical methods;
  • A team led by DOE’s Lawrence Livermore Laboratory in Livermore, California (CA) will attempt to understand the degradation processes that limit current methods using forms of chemical absorption.

Planned funding for the three awards totals US$13.5 million over three years, with US$4.5 million in Fiscal Year 2020 dollars and out-year funding contingent on congressional appropriations.

Making this technology truly viable will require real breakthroughs in basic science, and these efforts are important steps toward that goal, said Dr Chris Fell.

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