Researchers suggest that wind turbines can be used to capture CO2 and help mitigate the climate crisis, while also generating electricity.
Climate change calls for reducing the amount of carbon dioxide in the Earth’s atmosphere. But most of the CO2 emitted by humans is very high up in the air.
One possible solution for this problem is wind turbines that can potentially be used to funnel those emissions down to the ground, where they can be removed and utilized or permanently stored away.
Simulations were conducted by researchers at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind., to show that turbines are effective at drawing in polluted air from above cities or smokestacks.
Hence, the amount of CO2 that can be brought down to direct air capture (DAC) plants, can get a significant boost, thus essentially increasing the total amount of carbon that can be removed from the atmosphere.
The simulations are to be presented and explained at a meeting of the American Physical Society’s Division of Fluid Dynamics in Indianapolis on November 21.
The importance of this research has to do with the high altitudes at which CO2 emissions can be found that make it very difficult for most currently available DAC machinery to reach from the ground.
Utilizing wind turbines to bring those CO2 emissions down to a level, from which they can be captured by DAC facilities, can come as an added benefit to their original, power-generating purpose.
And using the electricity generated by the wind turbines to power the direct air capture plants may help solve the major hurdle that is the high cost of carbon removal.