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Sequestering smokestack carbon into cash

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June 10, 2010

Skyonic claims their SkyMine process can turn CO2 into sodium bicarbonate

Skyonic claims their SkyMine process can turn CO2 into sodium bicarbonate

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Last week, Texas-based Skyonic Corporation was granted a U.S. patent on its SkyMine technology, which is said to remove CO2 from smoke stack emissions by mineralizing it into sodium bicarbonate. That bicarbonate (also known as baking soda) can then be sold for use in glass manufacturing, algae biofuel production, and other areas. Skyonic claims that not only will its process remove carbon and other harmful substances from flue gases, but also that companies using SkyMine will financially profit from the sale of bicarbonates.

Skyonic is somewhat secretive about how its process works, but states that it combines gas handling, absorption and electrochemical production. Facilities utilizing it can choose to remove anywhere from 10 to 99 percent of the carbon in their emissions, due to the fact that different plant designs may require different carbon removal configurations.

The process is also said to remove sulfur, nitrogen and heavy metals such as mercury, which means that plants will be able to save money by doing away with existing scrubbers and other filtration equipment. Besides sodium bicarbonate, SkyMine can also reportedly produce marketable hydrochloric acid, bleach, chlorine, and hydrogen. We’re told that companies using the system can expect to see a return on their investment in as little as three years.

The SkyMine demonstration project

Skyonic has utilized a US$3 million Department of Energy grant to build a SkyMine demonstration project, which will later be incorporated into a commercial cement plant. That plant, owned and run by Capitol Aggregates, should be operational by 2012. It is hoped that 75,000 metric-tonnes (82,673 tons) of CO2 can be captured there, and that an additional 200,000 tonnes (220,462 tons) will be offset through the production of byproducts.

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.   All articles by Ben Coxworth
6 Comments

This is really "intriguing".

How does one get the critical numbers?

James Bowery
10th June, 2010 @ 08:40 pm PDT

Wow, we could be facing a glut of sodium bicarbonate if everybody starets using this process. Also could help a lot of companies facing cap and trade issues. Time to start looking for new uses for baking soda.

Eletruk
11th June, 2010 @ 10:35 am PDT

Does this process give a new lease of life for coal powered electricity generation? If so, goodbye Nuclear power!

windykites1
11th June, 2010 @ 11:55 am PDT

This would also work with gypsum. The result would be calcium carbonate and sulfuric acid as by products.

Greg Brownell
13th June, 2010 @ 10:37 pm PDT

A construction wallboard using a Sodium Bicarbonate based material would assist in extinguishing of fire by release of CO2.

William E Spears
7th April, 2011 @ 11:03 am PDT

What happens when the Bicarb Soda is Used, oops, release that Lovely Carbon...

Im all for people making cash out of whatever theyir ingenuity comes up with, but lets say that this may be an alternative (and possibly environmentally friendly) way to make these products...

We should always use wastes for industrial products than virgin feedstocks, but please don't BS about the Benefit to the Climate... (most of the Products that are to be made have a short life, and release CO_2 as a result of their use.)

Could be a energy saving, and it may save extracting the stuff from mined nahcolite,trona, natron etc, saving big holes in the earth is a better thing than saving CO_2 emissions.

MD
6th October, 2011 @ 09:37 am PDT
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