28 Jan 2010 18:13:30.810
A research centre dedicated to reducing the planet's carbon footprint will be launched at The University of Nottingham this week.
The £1.1m Centre for Innovation in Carbon Capture and Storage (CICCS) will explore cutting edge technology that 'captures' polluting carbon dioxide and stores it permanently - preventing its damaging release into the atmosphere.
CO2 and other greenhouse gases are the main contributors to global warming and climate change. By investigating new technologies that will store the gases safely and efficiently, the research can help to reduce their impact on the planet's climate and eco-systems.
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From governments and environmental pressure groups to oil producers and energy-intensive industry, research taking place at the centre will have a potentially global impact.
Experts in clean energy technologies and carbon capture will speak at the launch event, which takes place on Friday February 8. Keynote speakers include Lord Ronald Oxburgh, President of the Carbon Capture and Storage Association, Dr David Clarke, Director of the Energy Technologies Institute, Martin Maseo, Technical Director of the Energy Institute and Dr Keith Burnard, Chief Technical Consultant of AEA Energy and Environment. MP Nick Palmer, Parliamentary Private Secretary to Energy Minister Malcolm Wicks, will welcome guests at the event on his behalf.
The centre will be led by Professor Mercedes Maroto-Valer, of the University's School of Chemical and Environmental Engineering. But the research will be cross-disciplinary, bringing together engineers, mathematicians, bioscientists, geographers and geologists.
Research projects conducted in the centre will include the storage and conversion of CO2 into materials and fuels.
The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) will fund the centre over the next five years through its Challenging Engineering initiative.
Prof Maroto-Valer, Director of the Centre for Innovation in Carbon Capture and Storage, said: "We are excited about the prospects for CICCS to become a world leader in the field. We will continue to develop new processes that will make a significant impact in finding solutions for climate change and protecting the planet.
"We will present the research, training and outreach activities planned by CICCS at the launch event. The response to the centre has been outstanding so far."
Dr Nick Palmer MP added: "I'm delighted to help launch the centre, as its technology may well be crucial to Britain's future. Britain has huge coal reserves, which could have a greatly enhanced future to guarantee our energy security if carbon capture technology were more advanced."
The official opening of the Centre for Innovation in Carbon Capture and Storage will take place on Friday February 8 at University Park. For more information on the centre visit www.nottingham.ac.uk/carbonmanagement
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Notes to editors: The University of Nottingham is ranked in the UK's Top 10 and the World's Top 70 universities by the Shanghai Jiao Tong (SJTU) and Times Higher (THES) World University Rankings.
It provides innovative and top quality teaching, undertakes world-changing research, and attracts talented staff and students from 150 nations. Described by The Times as Britain's "only truly global university", it has invested continuously in award-winning campuses in the United Kingdom, China and Malaysia. Twice since 2003 its research and teaching academics have won Nobel Prizes. The University has won the Queen's Award for Enterprise in both 2006 (International Trade) and 2007 (Innovation - School of Pharmacy).
Its students are much in demand from 'blue-chip' employers. Winners of Students in Free Enterprise for three years in succession, and current holder of UK Graduate of the Year, they are accomplished artists, scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs, innovators and fundraisers. Nottingham graduates consistently excel in business, the media, the arts and sport. Undergraduate and postgraduate degree completion rates are amongst the highest in the United Kingdom.