Click here for more information about Algenuity
Click here for more information about LiqofluxPhenometrics Buy 3 Get 1 Free
Visit cricatalyst.com!Evodos Separation Technology

Research

The short distance from algae to carbon fiber

November 25, 2019
AlgaeIndustryMagazine.com

Carbon Fiber

The carbon fiber reinforcement gives the granite plate an extremely high strength, enabling completely new, efficient constructions. Image: A. Battenberg/TUM

In collaboration with fellow researchers, chemists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have developed a process that, according to initial calculations, can facilitate economically removing the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

There is an acute need for action if global warming is to be mitigated to a reasonable extent. In this context, the current World Climate Report mentions a technology developed by TUM chemists that opens an option for a net carbon sink that tackles the problem of atmospheric warming at the root.

Algae convert carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, power plants or steel processing exhaust into algae oil. In a subsequent step, this is then used to produce valuable carbon fibers — economically, as initial analyses show.

Important technical groundwork was done by Professor Thomas Brück and his team at the Algae Cultivation Center of the Technical University of Munich. The algae investigated at the center not only produce biofuel but can also be used to efficiently produce polyacrylonitrile (PAN) fibers. The energy of parabolic solar reflectors then chars the PAN-fibers to yield carbon fibers in a CO2-neutral manner.

Carbon fibers can be deployed to produce lightweight and high-strength materials. At the end of their life cycle, the carbon fibers can be stockpiled in empty coal seams, permanently removing the associated carbon dioxide equivalents from the atmosphere.

Prof. Brück’s colleagues, Prof. Uwe Arnold, and founder of CleanCarbon-
Technology, Kolja Kuse, also examined the economic aspects, technical applications and environmental impact of the entire process. “This is a novel, climate-friendly economic model in which we intelligently combine standard processes with innovations,” said Prof. Arnold.

“When you make plastics from carbon dioxide, it is quickly returned to the atmosphere through waste incineration plants following a few years of use,” said Mr. Kuse. “With the final safe storage (in this process), we remove the carbon dioxide from the atmosphere for millennia. This also makes the process clearly superior to carbon capture and storage (CCS) in the underground.”

Carbon fibers from algae are no different from conventional fibers and can therefore be used in all existing processes. Another important field of application could be the construction industry, which accounts for a significant proportion of global carbon dioxide emissions.

Carbon fibers can replace structural steel in construction materials. Thanks to their strength, they save on cement, and granite reinforced with carbon fiber can even be used to produce beams that have the same load-bearing capacity as steel but are as lightweight as aluminum.

Prof. Brück now plans to further improve the algae technology. “The system is easily scalable to large areas,” he says. “Plants which together would cover the size of Algeria would offset all CO2 emissions from air transport.”

More Like This…

Copyright ©2010-2020 AlgaeIndustryMagazine.com. All rights reserved. Permission required to reprint this article in its entirety. Must include copyright statement and live hyperlinks. Contact editorial@algaeindustrymagazine.com. A.I.M. accepts unsolicited manuscripts for consideration, and takes no responsibility for the validity of claims made in submitted editorial.

twittertopbarlinks_eventstopbarlinks_requesttopbarlinks_archives

From The A.I.M. Archives

— Refresh Page for More Choices
London-based architectural and urban design firm ecoLogicStudio www.ecologicstudio.com, led by Claudia Pasquero and Marco Poletto, has unveiled Photo.Synth.Etica, a large...
Trade Arabia reports that the Oman Centre for Marine Biotechnology (OCMB) recently signed a memorandum of understanding with Swedish Algae Factory to support the domestic...
Liu Jia reports for the Chinese Academy of Sciences that a “magic soil” made out of modified clays has proven effective in fighting red tide along China’s coastal waters ...
The ability to produce oil from water and carbon dioxide with the help of light is something that is essentially common to all plants, from unicellular algae to the giant...
The problem of access to safe drinking water in most parts of Bangladesh is a persistent challenge. Now, a team of scientists from Uppsala University, Sweden, and Dhaka U...
According to Vegconomist.com, advanced ingredients company Noblegen, creator of proteins, carbohydrates, and oil ingredients from the single celled microorganism Euglena ...
A nasal spray derived from algae and a plant in the tobacco family could offer a preventive measure for COVID-19. Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh (Pitt) and...
Dartmouth scientists have created a more sustainable feed for aquaculture by using a marine microalga co-product as a feed ingredient. The study is the first of its kind ...
How did plants make the evolutionary jump from water to land? Scientists think that green algae are their water-living ancestors, but we are not sure how the transition t...
The Los Alamos Reporter highlights new research by New Mexico Consortium scientist, Joseph Msanne, along with colleagues Shawn Starkenburg and Juergen Polle, that looks a...
Foodbev.com reports that French marine ingredients company Algaia will install a new specialty seaweed extract unit at its facility in Brittany, France, after securing €4...
French researchers have been exploring the potential of algae for boosting the immune systems of animals and reducing the use of antibiotics in livestock farming. Past st...