Largest CO2 Removal Plant

Largest CO2 Removal Plant

Author: ChemistryViews

Mammoth, the largest industrial Direct Air Capture and Carbon Storage (DACCS) plant, has started operations in Hellisheiði, Iceland. It was designed and constructed by Climeworks.

In the plant, air is drawn in by fans located inside a collector. The air passes through a filter inside the collector, which captures the CO2. When the filter is full of CO₂, the collector closes and the temperature in the chamber rises to about 100°C. This causes the filter to release the CO₂.

The CO2 is mixed with water and then pumped deep underground. This is done by Carbfix. They drilled a well under the futuristic-looking dome (pictured) that houses the collectors. The company injects the liquid 700 m down into the volcanic basalt that makes up 90 % of Iceland’s underground. There the CO2 reacts with magnesium, calcium, and iron in the rock to form crystals.

Climeworks expects to remove nearly 40,000 tons of CO2 from the air each year. The plant will be powered by the Hellisheidi geothermal power plant. So far, 12 modular containers have been installed in Mammoth, with 60 more to be completed this year.

According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the United Nations’ climate expert body, carbon capture technologies will be needed to meet the goals of the 2015 Paris Agreement, but large reductions in emissions are a priority. More plants are planned around the world, but the process has yet to prove that it can be scaled up enough to have a meaningful impact, and its success depends on the availability of renewable energy. Critics also worry that the technology could allow companies to pollute more and take money away from other important things like renewable energy.




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