DAC-TALES: Direct Air Capture - Transdisciplinary Assessment Combining Labs, the Environment, the Economy, and Society


Rezo, Daniel © Copyright: Lehrstuhl fuer Technische Thermodynamik der RWTH Aachen


Daniel Rezo

Sorption Systems Engineering


+49 241 80 90489



According to current research, compliance with the Paris Climate Agreement will require not only a drastic reduction in greenhouse gas emissions but also negative emissions. Negative emissions refer to the long-term removal of CO2 from the atmosphere (Carbon Dioxide Removal, CDR). A promising CDR technology is Direct Air Capture and Storage (DACCS) of atmospheric CO2. First commercial DACCS plants are already in operation. In order to create a transparent and reliable basis for future climate policy, it is important to know the potential, risks, and challenges for the large-scale application of DACCS.

Numerous studies already evaluate DACCS based on technical, environmental, economic, or societal aspects, but these aspects have mostly been considered separately. However, for a large-scale deployment of DACCS, an integrated, transdisciplinary assessment method across multiple scales is needed.

Such an integrated assessment method is developed within DAC-TALES in an interdisciplinary research network. DAC-TALES is part of the CO2 Removal Synthesis and Transfer Project (CDRSynTra) funded by the BMBF. Within DAC-TALES, the Chair of Technical Thermodynamics investigates both the technological development of adsorption-based Direct Air Capture systems and the ecological and economic aspects of DACCS along the entire value chain.

First, carbon capture from ambient air will be investigated experimentally on a laboratory scale. In parallel, dynamic simulation models of an adsorption-based DAC system will be developed and validated using the experimentally obtained data. The validated models will then be integrated into an energy system model and linked to long-term storage of CO2. This integrated model of DACCS and energy system forms the basis for a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), which evaluates the environmental impacts of the application of DACCS over its entire life cycle. The entire life cycle includes CO2 capture, transport, and storage. The ultimate goal of the LCA is to evaluate the ecological potential of the large-scale application of DACCS as a CDR technology.

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