Scaling DAC with Heirloom’s Noah McQueen

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In this week’s episode of Carbon Removal Newsroom, hosts Radhika Moolgavkar and Dr. Jane Zelikova are joined by Heirloom’s Head of Research and Process Engineering, Noah Mcqueen. Heirloom is a Direct Air Capture company that launched in April 2021.

Noah and our hosts discuss the science of Heirloom’s approach, the techno-economic challenges to scaling DAC, and the kind of continuous research and materials development necessary to grow the industry.

In 2021, Noah and several co-authors published a review of existing DAC technologies in the journal Process in Energy. The paper provided a techno-economic assessment of the two most researched and developed DAC methods- liquid solvent and solid sorbent. The researchers used their findings to examine what will be needed to scale up these technologies quickly. They also made recommendations for how research can be directed to support the widespread deployment of DAC.

Heirloom received investment from Breakthrough Energy Ventures and Lowercarbon Capital and sold carbon removal credits to Shopify and Stripe. The technique they are pursuing has not been commercialized before and was co-invented by some of the leading experts in the industry, including Dr. Peter Keleman, Dr. Jennifer Wilcox, Dr. Greg Dipple, and Noah.

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