Aluminum production could get much better for the environment

May 11, 2018

You probably don’t think about aluminum very much. But you should. The ubiquitous metal is in airplanes, iPhones, and engine blocks made by General Motors, to name just a few uses. A 12-inch MacBook, for example, consists of over half a pound of aluminum. And since the late 19th century, the metal has been smelted using the same method—a process that releases carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas.

Today, two companies—Alcoa and Rio Tinto—announced that they’re working together following the discovery of a new way to smelt aluminum that releases oxygen, not carbon dioxide. The new technique was developed by DMSE alum Jim Yurko Ph.D.

Aluminum smelted with the new technique

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