Printer Friendly

Sea cucumbers inspire sponge that absorbs CO2.

Byline: ANI

Washington, May 16 (ANI): An Australian researcher has suggested that the porous structure of sea cucumbers could be the perfect model to create a sponge that absorbs C02 (carbon dioxide) and boosts hydrogen fuel production.

According to a report by ABC News, the researcher in question is Chemical engineer Dr Andrew Harris of the University of Sydney.

Australia's main source of hydrogen currently comes from burning fossil fuels, which also releases C02.

Dr Harris said that the C02 released during this process could be absorbed by sponges made of calcium oxide.

Harris is using a group of marine creatures known as echinoderms, which includes starfish, sea urchins and sea cucumbers, as his source of inspiration.

He said that the creatures have an "awesome" calcium carbonate skeleton, ideal for absorbing C02, which he hopes to mimic the structure to produce a synthetic sponge.

Harris said that removing carbon dioxide from the combustion process dramatically increases the output of hydrogen from 50 percent to 80 percent of the total volume.

To carry out their research, Harris and his team have been awarded a research grant from European Energy Company E.ON.

They will investigate materials like silicon carbide and alumina to build synthetic sponges, which would be grafted with calcium oxide to absorb the C02.

To keep them cost effective, the C02 would have to be re-released so the sponges can be used again.

"You want to be able to use the calcium oxide again and again. It's prohibitively expensive to mine calcium oxide just to mop up C02," said Harris. (ANI)

Copyright 2009 Asian News International (ANI) - All Rights Reserved.

Provided by an company
COPYRIGHT 2009 Al Bawaba (Middle East) Ltd.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2009 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Asian News International
Date:May 16, 2009
Previous Article:Barry Richards son commits suicide.
Next Article:Natalie Portman buys medieval manor for 3.25M dollar.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2018 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters