CO2-Capturing Crystals That Mimic DNA Developed by UCLA Scientists

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UCLA scientists have created DNA-like crystals that capture carbon dioxide

UCLA graduate student Hexian Deng and biochemistry professor Omar M. Yaghi have developed synthetic crystals that can be used to trap carbon dioxide.

UCLA’s “designer crystal” approach opens the door for more low cost, scalable applications, such as trapping carbon dioxide from factories or vehicle exhaust pipes.

The new synthetic crystals can code information just as DNA does, in a more simple form based on the sequence of pores in the material. The result is a sponge-like ability to trap gasses, along with a high degree of selectivity that in turn leads to highly efficient carbon capture. According to a UCLA press release, Deng was able to achieve a 400% improvement in carbon dioxide capture by manipulating the sequence.

The UCLA breakthrough is also reminiscent of another innovation related to crystalline structure, a form of glass that can swell in a sponge-like manner and selectively trap volatile organic compounds. Swelling glass, marketed under the trademark Obsorb, was developed by Wooster College professor Paul Edmiston as a relatively quick and low cost way to clean up industrial sites.

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3 Responses to “CO2-Capturing Crystals That Mimic DNA Developed by UCLA Scientists”

  1. Akinpelumi Akinsanya

    Talking of synthetic crystals for co2 capture here is more news on artificial material for co2 capture

    It may seem too good to be true, but engineers from the University of Cincinnati have devised a way to capture and remove co2 out of the air and then convert it into biofuel building blocks. The engineers have created an artificial photosynthetic material made from foam injected with frog enzymes, which combined with the power of the sun, converts CO2 into oxygen and sugar. With more research, the sugar could then be used to make ethanol or biofuel without the use of farmland or crops.

    http://www.inhabitat.com/2010/03/30/scientists-develop-carbon-capturing-photosynthetic-foam/

  2. Alyn Chan

    Here is another new type of synthetic crystal that is capable of trapping the greenhouse gas 400% more efficiently than similar materials.

    Checkout !!
    http://www.inhabitat.com/2010/02/16/chemists-develop-ultra-efficient-carbon-capturing-crystals/

  3. B Evans

    Carbon capture is often conflated with so called clean coal technology for power plants, but UCLA’s “designer crystal” approach opens the door for more low cost, scalable applications, such as trapping carbon dioxide from factories or vehicle exhaust pipes.


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