IIT Bombay Students Win Rs 2 Crore Prize From Elon Musk For This Innovation!

With a population of over a billion people, India has no dearth of talent.  This talent keeps on making us proud from time to time. This time it is four students and two professors from IIT Bombay who have made us proud.

Team of IITians wins grant of Rs.1.85 Crore

A team from the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT-B) has won a grant worth US$250,000 (approximately Rs. 1.85 crores) from XPRIZE Foundation in collaboration with the Elon Musk Foundation. The grant is being given for developing new tri-modular technology for low-cost, efficient capture of carbon dioxide (CO2) from point sources of emission and transforming them into salts.

The announcement was made at the Sustainable Innovation Forum at COP-26 in Glasgow.

The team comprised of Srinath Iyer (Ph.D. student), Anwesha Banerjee (Ph.D. student), Srushti Bhamare (BTech+MTech student), and Shubham Kumar (Junior Research fellow-Earth Science) This is the only single institute team from India to have won this award.

Their invention turns CO2 into usable salts at the source

 “Our suggestion on capturing carbon dioxide at its source (in industries) and then turning it into carbonate salts with potential future usage to once again use it in a way that it does not enter the atmosphere as gaseous CO2, has won us this recognition,” said professor Vikram Vishal, department of earth sciences and Interdisciplinary Programme in Climate Studies (IDPCS) at the institute. He is also one of the two mentors for this project.

Professor Arnab Dutta, department of chemistry & (IDPCS), and another mentor also added, “It is now an undisputed fact among the scientists that nearly 1.1 degree Celsius rise in Earth temperature has happened due to rise in CO2 levels post industrialisation. Some of the main sectors contributing to this have been power, petroleum, steel, fertilizers, and cement industries. Our idea can be incorporated in the existing industries to cap CO2 emission at its source.”

As part of their research, the team conceptualized the idea and conducted an internal assessment before submitting their project on paper with scientific justification supporting the concept.

The new invention not only captures CO2 emitted by industries but also turns it into other commercially viable chemicals in industries ensuring a financial benefit to them while implementing this unique CO2 management program.

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