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Mechanical Engineering

2019

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Ted von Hippel

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Thermal Removal Of Carbon Dioxide From The Atmosphere: Energy Requirements And Scaling Issues, Ted Von Hippel Aug 2019

Thermal Removal Of Carbon Dioxide From The Atmosphere: Energy Requirements And Scaling Issues, Ted Von Hippel

Ted von Hippel

I conduct a systems-level study of direct air capture of CO2 using techniques from thermal physics. This system relies on a combination of an efficient heat exchanger, radiative cooling, and refrigeration, all at industrial scale and operated in environments at low ambient temperatures. While technological developments will be required for such a system to operate efficiently, those developments rest on a long history of refrigeration expertise and technology, and they can be developed and tested at modest scale. I estimate that the energy required to remove CO2 via this approach is comparable to direct air capture by other techniques. The ...