Naked Scientists Podcast

Naked Scientists episode

Sat, 18th Jun 2011

Coal Gasification and Carbon Capture

Smoke of chimneys is the breath of Soviet Russia (c) Humus sapiens @ Wikipedia

This week, we find out how to get useful gas from useless coal, and make money from waste carbon dioxide!  Underground coal gasification could allow us to access huge amounts of energy in inaccessible coal seams. We find out how it works as well as exploring a new method for capturing waste carbon and turning it into useful chemicals.  In the news, dinosaurs inspire new designs for aircraft, spotting a star being ripped apart by a black hole, and the South African bid for the world's biggest radio telescope.  Plus, Diana asks what the point is of "junk" DNA?

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In this edition of Naked Scientists

Full Transcript

  • 01:43 - Spotting A Black Hole Swallowing a Star

    An unique astronomical event – an incredibly bright and long lived burst of gamma rays – was probably the result of a black hole destroying a star, according to research published in the journal Science this week.

  • 04:41 - Comet Hartley 2

    Comet Hartley 2 has been found to be a more varied place than was previously expected

  • 07:31 - South Africa and the Square Kilometre Array

    The Square Kilometre Array, or SKA, should help us to answer some of the big outstanding questions about our universe. It will either be located in Australia or South Africa. Bernie Fanaroff, project manager for the South African SKA bid, met up with Chris Smith…

  • 14:05 - Porous Molecules By Design

    Porous molecules, useful in a huge range of applications including separating chemicals and catalysing reactions, may be designed on demand thanks to a new method published in the journal Nature this week.

  • 25:40 - Underground Coal Gasification

    Underground coal gasification is a way to get useful fuel from otherwise inaccessible coal seams that are simply un-economical to mine.

  • 32:12 - SkyMine - Capturing Carbon for Profit

    Skyonic have developed “Skymine”, a system that not only extracts CO2 but actually turns it into something they can sell!



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