Monash carbon capture student team wins US$250,000 XPRIZE

A team of Monash University students has won a major international prize for its work on carbon capture.

The Monash Carbon Capture and Conversion team won one of 16 US$250,000 prizes in the XPRIZE Carbon Removal Competition launched earlier this year by Elon Musk and the XPRIZE Foundation.

Assistant Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Tim Wilson congratulated the team on winning this prize.

“This is a fantastic recognition of a team of Australian university students competing on the world stage,” Assistant Minister Wilson said.

“It is a very worthwhile project that works towards technology that could be part of the solution to offset emissions and reduce the risks of climate change.”

“The project aligns well with the government’s Technology Investment Roadmap towards using low-emissions technologies, and the IPCC’s and IEA’s pathways to net zero by 2050.”

The Monash team’s winning XPRIZE proposal consists of novel biologically based carbon capture and conversion technologies. The proposal uses artificial forestry and microalgae cultures as carbon capture methods and the biomass produced will be transformed into cross-laminated timber (for the construction of sustainable buildings) and biochar (soil amendment) for durable sequestration.

This undergraduate-led student design team draws Monash students from across the Engineering, Science, Business, Humanities disciplines and from its Malaysia campus.

The idea for the proposal arose at a session organised by the Woodside-Monash Energy Partnership, and was developed by a Monash Industry Team Initiative.

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