Northwestern University researchers develop CO2 capturing solid oxide fuel cells for ships

October 13, 2021 |

In Illinois, a Northwestern University research team offers a practical way to make ships CO2 neutral — or even CO2 negative — with CO2-capturing solid oxide fuel cells. After “burning” traditional carbon-based fuels, the fuel cell generates concentrated CO2 that can be stored on-board the ship. From there, the CO2 can either be sequestered or recycled into a renewable hydrocarbon fuel.

The team presents its analysis in “Viability of vehicles utilizing on-board CO2 capture,” published in the journal ACS Energy Letters. In the paper, the team looks at various factors, including fuel storage volumes and mass requirements for a wide range of vehicle classes — from light-duty passenger vehicles to tanker ships — and compares onboard CO2 capture to battery electric and hydrogen fuel cell options.

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Category: Research

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