Invented an innovative reactor for producing oxygen from CO2 (3 photos)

Humanity faces two global challenges: solving the environmental problem of air pollution and space exploration. In solving both problems, an important place is to obtain a sufficient amount of oxygen (O2). What is needed is molecular oxygen, which allows a person to breathe. Developers from the California Institute of Technology have announced the creation of a fundamentally new reactor capable of \Such oxygen is suitable for both interplanetary flights and for saving the Earth from environmental disasters. Currently, the International Space Station oxygen production process is based on the electrolysis of water, during which the H2O molecule is split into hydrogen and oxygen, which are then accumulated in special containers under pressure. In a new reactor developed in California, the principle of operation is based on the removal of carbon atoms from CO2. The process is based on the discovery of a phenomenon in which carbon molecules placed under certain conditions on an inert surface (for example, gold foil) are split into molecular O2 and atomic C. During the preparatory process, the carbon molecule is ionized and then placed in an electric field that accelerates it and sends in the direction of the surface covered with gold foil. Productivity is currently quite modest: from 100 molecules of CO2, up to 2 molecules of O2 are \However, the reactor demonstrated the process’s efficiency, which gives us hope for an increase in productivity. In the future, new generators will be able to produce oxygen for lunar and Martian expeditions, and on Earth remove excess carbon and reduce pollution of the planet.

Sam Richards

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