Updated: 11/24/2005; 11:23:23 PM.

Future energy
Renewables, fuel cells, hydrogen, and efficiency


daily link  Friday, July 15, 2005


New Energy Capital gets $30m:  June 2005.  "California Controller Steven Westly announced today that the California State Teachersí Retirement System (CalSTRS) - the nationís third largest public pension fund - and VantagePoint Venture Partners, one of the nationís largest and most active venture capital firms had co-invested $30 million in New Energy Capital Corp., a leading clean energy company. Westly sits on the Board of Directors of CalSTRS and has been instrumental in its efforts to increase the pension fundís investments in clean technology.

New Energy Capital will deploy the capital to acquire, build, and operate renewable energy and distributed generation projects in North America. .. New Energy Capital is pursuing investments in onsite cogeneration, renewable power, and ethanol and biodiesel production projects, creating a diversified portfolio in the clean energy sector."

  3:25:55 PM  permalink  

Natural mineral locks up carbon dioxide: "The metamorphic mineral serpentine -- or magnesium silicate hydroxide -- is composed of magnesium, silicon and oxygen and is plentiful. He researchers used material from the Cedar Hills quarry on the Pennsylvania/ Maryland border for this study, but the mineral is available in large quantities in many places. The U.S. deposits of the minerals that can be used for this process Ė serpentine and ovivine Ė can sequester all the carbon dioxide emissions produced from fossil fuels.

"Previous researchers investigating serpentine for use in sequestering carbon dioxide have crushed serpentine very finely, to sizes smaller than beach sand, but, even at these small sizes, it takes high temperatures to speed up the reaction, "says Maroto-Valer. "With our method, we do not need to crush it that fine and we do not need high temperatures. In fact, the reaction gives off heat. Our method is much less energy expensive...

When serpentine dissolves in sulfuric acid, the silicon in the mineral becomes silicon dioxide, or sand, and falls to the bottom, while the magnesium becomes magnesium sulfate. Treating some of this magnesium sulfate with sodium hydroxide also creates some magnesium hydroxide. The researchers were able to convert large amounts of the serpentine's magnesium to these chemicals providing large surface areas for reactions to occur in solution at room temperature.

Carbon dioxide passed through the solution of magnesium sulfate and magnesium hydroxide converts both to magnesium carbonate or magnesite, which becomes a solid and falls to the bottom. This solid can be used to manufacture construction blocks and there is also a small market for hydrated magnesium carbonate in the cosmetics industry. The silicon dioxide can be used to remove sulfur dioxide from the flue gases, which can subsequently be converted to sulfuric acid to use in the first part of the process.  .. [The researchers] would like to regenerate the sulfuric acid to minimize costs.

Because carbon dioxide will be the last gas in the emission stream treated, there are two options for commercial implementation. Fossil fuel burning plants could simply place a serpentine reactor as the last component of their emissions clean up and sequester carbon on site. Or, if the area is heavy with fossil fuel burning plants, each plant could pipe their carbon dioxide to a central treatment plant. "

Also found: a review of sequestration options, and the chemical formulas.

  9:16:48 AM  permalink  

 
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Copyright 2005 © Ken Novak.
Last update: 11/24/2005; 11:23:23 PM.