Modified Train Cars Utilize Brake Energy to cleanse the air of CO2, help Fight Climate Change

The power generated by trains during every brake manoeuvre can supply 20 homes with electricity for a whole day, according the researchers.

Utilizing the energy produced by a train’s brakes CO2Rail, a US-based company CO2Rail has collaborated with scientists of The University of Sheffield to create Direct Air Capture (DAC) equipment to combat climate change as well as clean the air around a railway car. The design of the device will allow it to be placed in specially designed rail cars that are currently operating trains. It will capture and utilize huge amounts of energy produced by a train’s deceleration and brakes come on. The energy could be used to remove CO2 (CO2) out of the atmosphere, which in turns returns clean air to the air.

When the brakes are activated in trains, a tremendous quantity of power is generated. In order to give an estimate, during each brake maneuver the energy produced can be enough to supply 20 homes with electricity throughout the day. If we could harness the energy generated during each slowing or stopping, it is 105 times greater than the energy created through Hoover Dam. Hoover Dam in the US at the same time.

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In the absence of any device that harnesses it, the energy wasted. Researchers are working to fill this gap and harness the massive amounts of energy that are generated in the stopping process. The DAC technology found in rail cars operates by utilizing the huge inhalations of air which stretch across in the slipstream of the train. It directs the air into massive circular CO2 chambers. It also removes the necessity of fan systems that use a lot of energy and are required for stationary DAC operations.

Following this in turn, the air undergoes the chemical process of CO2 is removed from the air and clean air is then released from the back or under the train. This aids in bringing clean air back to the air.

After the CO2 is adequately taken out and the chamber is shut, the chamber is sealed and CO2 gets absorbed to be concentrated and stored in a liquid reservoir. It is then disposed into CO2 rail tankers at the time of a crew change or fueling stop. The CO2 that is gathered can be utilized for carbon-based economy purposes as valuable fuelstock or used in landfill sites, according to researchers.

“The technology could harvest substantial amounts of CO2 for far cheaper costs, and is expected to achieve annual productivity in the range of 0.45 gigatons (Gt) in 2030. 2.9 Gt by 2050 as well as 7.8 Gt by 2075 with each vehicle being able to produce 3000 tonnes of CO2 over the next few years,” said Peter Styring director of the Centre for Carbon Dioxide Utilization located at the University of Sheffield. Styring is also co-author on the research that was released in Joule.

Researchers from the team are developing a new system that’s based off the same technology and assists in removing CO2 emissions from diesel locomotives.

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