Date of Award

Spring 5-8-2023

Access Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering


Mechanical Engineering

Committee Chair

Sandra Boetcher

First Committee Member

Rafael Rodriguez

Second Committee Member

Claus Daniel

College Dean

Jim Gregory


Carbon dioxide (CO2) capture is a crucial approach to reducing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere to directly combat climate change. Major components of the technology to desublimate CO2 at cryogenic temperatures are mature and have the potential to be applied to build large Arctic/Antarctic direct-air CO2 capture plants. Pressure swing adsorption another gas separation technique used in industry today that can be modified for atmospheric carbon capture. The discussion of energy consumption for cryogenic and combined direct air capture systems is explored in this study. The investigation of precompression of atmospheric air for a direct-air capture CO2 system using an attached “waste-cool” precooler is examined. In this novel approach, a thermodynamic model based on psychrometric theories is evaluated to determine the required work input of the system at various inlet compression ratios and various inlet temperatures. Turbine recovery is also considered for the potential to capture “waste energy.” A pressure swing adsorption unit is evaluated as another modification to the cryogenic system to minimize energy consumption.