Champaign, Ill. — Dioxide Materials has been awarded $4 million by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E). The award will advance further research into Dioxide Materials’ technology that will produce transportation fuels and industrial chemicals electrochemically from carbon dioxide emitted by power plants. Dioxide is collaborating on the project with 3M (NYSE:MMM), a subrecipient of the ARPA-E award.
Although electrochemical recycling of carbon dioxide is not a new technology, Dioxide Materials has patented a catalyst that makes carbon dioxide recycling energy efficient for the first time ever, using three times less electricity. The technology’s scientific principles have been demonstrated, but the risks need to be lowered before the technology can attract the funding needed to move into the marketplace. ARPA-E funding will allow Dioxide Materials to create the first industrially relevant prototype and lower the risks so that substantial development funding can be obtained.
“We are thankful to ARPA-E for having confidence in our technology and our partnership with 3M,” said Rich Masel, CEO of Dioxide Materials, which is located at the EnterpriseWorks technology business incubator at the University of Illinois Research Park. “Government investments like this play a huge role in the fight against global warming. We are excited and grateful for the opportunity to play a part in making America’s future a sustainable one.”
The award is one of 66 projects funded from the $130 million ARPA-E “OPEN 2012” program, designed to support innovative energy technologies. ARPA-E seeks out transformational, breakthrough technologies that show fundamental technical promise but are too early for private-sector investment. These projects have the potential to produce game-changing breakthroughs in energy technology, form the foundation for entirely new industries, and have large commercial impacts.
About Dioxide Materials:
Dioxide Materials is creating a new chemical value chain using carbon dioxide emitted from power plants and renewable energy (instead of oil and gas) to obtain high value downstream chemicals. This technology breakthrough lowers the cost of conversion by a factor of three, creating the first cost-competitive route to large-volume renewable chemicals and transportation fuels. The company’s vision is to create a new industry where waste carbon dioxide from power plants is used as a feedstock to produce gasoline, diesel fuel, jetfuel, and industrial chemicals—reducing the U.S.’s dependence on imported oil, creating thousands of U.S. jobs while significantly reducing the greenhouse gas emissions that lead to global warming. For more information, visit dioxidematerials.com.