The US start-up Equatic wants to use a new plant to produce hydrogen and at the same time clean the seas and the air. This could benefit aviation in particular, as Boeing has already signed a deal with the company.
Climate change poses major challenges. The latest research also assumes that we could miss the 1.5 degree Celsius target of the Paris climate protection agreement. Sometimes there is even talk of three degrees Celsius. But there are also more and more glimmers of hope.
Nevertheless, many lose sight of the far-reaching consequences of greenhouse gas emissions. In addition to large amounts of carbon, methane and co. in the atmosphere, there are currently millions of tons of greenhouse gases in our oceans. However, the US start-up Equatic wants to change that.
Equatic produces hydrogen by electrical voltage
The Californian company is based on a cooperation with the University of California in Los Angeles (LA). Two Equatic systems are now in operation. One in LA, the other in Singapore. The process runs as follows:
The system directs seawater into a chamber and applies a voltage. This tension separates the water into several components. In addition to hydrogen, which the start-up wants to sell, two streams of water will also be created.
One of them is particularly acidic, the other basic. Calcium and CO2 combine again in the basic current, so that magnesium bicarbonate is formed. To further extract CO2 from the air, Equatic also blows air through the alkaline water stream.
Effects on ocean ecosystems unclear
The CO2 is then still in the water, but does not have a major impact on the acidity and can be bound for up to 10,000 years. In the meantime, the company has completed a number of deals with large companies. The US aircraft manufacturer Boeing wants to buy about 2,100 tons of hydrogen from the system and at the same time offset 62,000 tons of emissions through Equatic.
However, there are also some theoretical risks. Experts say, for example, that the relatively complex chemistry in the sea is thrown out of balance as a result of the intervention. At the same time, certain sea creatures could suffer from the higher mineral content of the approach.