Three Welsh inventors are touting their Greenbox system that would replace car exhaust systems with an emissions capture system. It uses algae to absorb the emitted gases and hold them inertly so that the boxes can be easily transported for centralised processing of the car wastes.
The three, who stumbled across the idea while experimenting with carbon dioxide to help boost algae growth for fish farming, have set up a company called Maes Anturio Limited, which translates from Welsh as Field Adventure.
Through a chemical reaction, the captured gases from the box would be fed to algae, which would then be crushed to produce a bio-oil. This extract can be converted to produce a biodiesel almost identical to normal diesel.
This biodiesel can be fed back into a diesel engine, the emptied Greenbox can be affixed to the car and the cycle can begin again.
The process also yields methane gas and fertiliser, both of which can be captured separately. The algae required to capture all of Britain’s auto emissions would take up around 400 hectares.
The three estimate that 10 facilities could be built across the UK to handle the carbon dioxide from the nearly 30 million cars on British roads.
It’s a damn fascinating idea, so long as they can make replacing the box each time you fill up the tank a simple enough clickety-click type procedure.