Gasworld TV’s latest webinar, CO2: Use It, Don’t Lose It and Monitor, Jeff Holyoak, Vice-President of Sales and Market Development, TOMCO Systems, talked about identifying new applications for carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon capture and increasing the overall uses of CO2.

TOMCO Systems (TOMCO) specialise in using captured CO2 for constructive purposes, thereby reducing unnecessary emissions. With the company’s focus being to identify new applications for CO2, Holyoak told gasworld TV that by integrating these new uses with carbon capture and sequestration, it’s possible to increase the overall utilisation of the gas.

He said, “So that’s really been our focus, whether it’s in food processing, whether it’s in variations of carbon capture or sequestration types of utilisation like water treatment, concrete curing or grow houses.”

With many companies looking at the reduction of carbon footprints, TOMCO is no exception. The company sees the utilisation of CO2 as being an effective way to decreasing overall carbon emissions that could negatively impact the environment.

Used in everything from perishable food transport to maintaining the temperature of sensitive biomedical or pharmacological products during transit, dry ice is an industry that TOMCO is heavily involved in.

In terms of the potential for CO2 sequestration and utilisation, Holyoak sees the circular use of CO2 as a winning formula when it comes to the production of dry ice, he said, “One of our core focuses in all of that is both on demand dry ice manufacturing for the end user, but also efficient manufacturing of that dry ice.”

As gas is used heavily in the manufacturing process of dry ice, the actual production of the dry ice itself is an inefficient use of CO2. The trick is, according to Holyoak, capturing the lost gas and reusing it in the process.

He continued, “So as you can capture that and reuse it, reintegrate it into the production process, you can get very close to a one-to-one efficiency rating of that manufacturing process.”

This CO2 recycling process still requires refined capture techniques. One such technique used by TOMCO includes flue gas capture, this involves capturing CO2 from a flue gas generated after combusting a carbon-based fuel.

Another method employed by the company is exhaust capture, which usually involves a liquid solvent absorbing in the CO2, and direct air capture (DAC). DAC uses chemical reactions to capture CO2 from the atmosphere.

After capturing the gases, TOMCO must decide how best to utilise it. Holyoak clarified that identifying more applications for captured CO2 quickly generates further opportunities for utilisation. Speaking about the potential for sequestration and reuse, he said, “Certainly we can sequester it and put it into the ground and the domes and underground wells but, long term, that’s just more of an added cost to the equation as opposed to what was noted earlier.”

“CO2 is a great resource and has a lot of great capabilities and a lot of different applications.”

By increasing the overall use of the gas, Holyoak said that they can prioritise several different areas including pure sequestration, food processing, capture or reuse, dry ice, and fire suppression.

In addition to this, the company also utilises the CO2 for pH control in the water treatment industry and concrete curing.

Aside from the apparent environmental benefits of carbon capture, there is also strong motivation for business involvement. Speaking about the opportunity for market growth in the sector, Holyoak said, “I think everybody’s trying to determine how to capture, what to capture, where to capture and then what to do with it after you have captured it.”

Noting the critical nature of security and safety of the supply chain, he continued, saying, “We’re kind of captured right now by three or four different types of source feeds of the gas and when one of those are disrupted like ethanol or ammonia or something like that, then the entire supply chain becomes at risk for a short period of time.”

Holyoak sees the continued growth of CO2 utilisation techniques bolstering this supply chain, causing high national and global interest, in turn causing further market growth and stability.