Economic development is like a parade. While not all of the jobs are glamorous -- for every horseback rider there's a horseback shoveler -- they are all important. Example: Researchers at the Albany Department of Energy are working hard to solve global warming problems that some attribute to commercial development.
Burning coal and other fossil fuels releases carbon dioxide, or [CO.sub.2], into the air, possibly trapping the suns energy in the atmosphere and creating a greenhouse effect. In the last 100 years, scientists say the [CO.sub.2] level in our atmosphere has more than tripled.
Researchers Dave Dahlin and Bill O'Conner are hoping to develop a method for trapping the [CO.sub.2] permanently in powdered magnesite. The current process involves using an agitator (think blender) to mix water and rock, which -- thanks to a highly heated and pressurized chamber -- are able to absorb the [CO.sub.2]. The compound is then filtered and dried.
"We hope to have this complicated process commercially viable by 2015 to 2030," says George Dooley III, research director at the Albany Research Center. "If we can get the technology in line with emissions and can create a geologically stable end product, the economic opportunities will be substantial."
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|Article Type:||Brief Article|
|Date:||Mar 1, 2000|
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