Scientists now looking at Old method for Power generation from fossil fuels without emission of Carbon dioxide (CO2) - chaprama | Insights from the world of Technology and Lifestyle


Sunday, January 22, 2017

Scientists now looking at Old method for Power generation from fossil fuels without emission of Carbon dioxide (CO2)

As goes the saying Old is Gold. Scientists are now turning the clock back and looking at an old method to get energy (power generation) from fossil fuels without the emission of carbon dioxide (CO2). As we know Global warming is getting increased day by day with the release of more CO2 into the atmosphere. Scientists have come with rather many innovative methods in the past to lower Global warming. So, this old method could be helpful in lowering the present level of CO2 emissions.

Scientists now looking at Old method for power generation from fossil fuels  without emission of Carbon dioxide (CO2)

Currently, we burn the fossil fuels for the generation of heat and power. During the process of burning hydrocarbons mix with oxygen and produce heat water and carbon dioxide. Alternately hydrocarbons can also be mixed with halogens that include iodine-bromine and chlorine in the form of hydrogen halides. When combined with halides they partially oxidize the fuel. Heat is also generated in the reaction and instead of carbon dioxide, it produces simple carbon.

According to Eric Mcfarland, professor of chemical engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, this method has been tried by many oil companies in the early 60s and the 50s and even the 40s using different halogens to produce partial oxidation products. However, they have discarded the usage since it is associated with huge costs than the cost of making co2. Also, the fuel consumption is twice as much needed for combustion to produce the same amount of energy.

Besides emission free the halogen method holds few advantages:

  • Instead of the flame, it produces char-a mass of black material.
  • No additional infrastructure is needed and can be carried with the currently available material that is used for carbon combustion.
  • It produces the same chemicals that refineries make like methanol, olefins, ethanol, glycol, ethylene, propanol, propylene, etc. but without CO2 emissions.
  • Also, it is easier and cheaper way to extract Hydrogen from natural gas using hydrogen halide process than the current process that produces a lot of emissions.
  • Hydrogen, in turn, produces ammonia and either hydrogen or ammonia can be used to run vehicles which is considered as the clean fuel.
However, McFarland believes that in order for the current method to be implemented it needs assistance from the governments.

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