Indoor CO2 removal : decentralized carbon capture by air conditioning

H. TIAN, L. ZHU*, J. NI, T. WEI, P. WANG, H. XIAO, X. CHEN*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Growing evidence indicates that an elevated CO2 concentration as low as 1000 ppm could lead to direct human health risks, while the CO2 concentration in a lot of indoor environments may exceed that figure by several times. Employing the latest developed moisture swing sorbent, we here built a CO2 purification module to be incorporated with existing air conditioning units to keep the indoor CO2 concentration at healthy levels. The sorbent binds CO2 spontaneously from ambient air when dry and then releases CO2 in the presence of moisture, thanks to the moisture-driven reversible hydrolysis reaction of carbonate ions at a nano interface. Thus, the indoor dry air circulation and the outdoor air flow (for cooling the condenser) of the air-conditioning system provide a perfect carbon capture platform for the moisture swing sorbent to work. Tests in an acrylic box (mimicking an indoor environment) showed that the CO2 purification module can keep the indoor CO2 level to be close to or even lower than outdoor levels with an initial CO2 concentration of 1000 or 2000 ppm. An enlarged test was further conducted in an air-conditioned office to demonstrate the effectiveness of the purification module. Finally, we discussed the potential of this kind of decentralized carbon capture facility enabled by retrofitted air conditioners to contribute to negative emissions and mitigation of the global warming and climate change crisis. © 2023 Elsevier Ltd
Original languageEnglish
Article number100369
JournalMaterials Today Sustainability
Volume22
Early online date28 Feb 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2023
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (12002271, 11872302), Xi'an Science and Technology Plan Project, China (2019220914SYS024CG046), and Earth Engineering Center and Center for Advanced Materials for Energy and Environment at Columbia University.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Elsevier Ltd

Keywords

  • Air conditioning
  • Decentralized carbon capture
  • Human health
  • Indoor CO

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