MIT devises eco-iron

Iron. It's the material of the industrial revolution, and it's dirty stuff to make.

Researchers at MIT, however, say they have come up with a way to produce the metal without generating carbon dioxide or other pollutants. In the experimental process, an electric current is passed through a vat of liquid iron oxide, which then gets transformed into iron and oxygen.

"What sets molten oxide electrolysis apart from other metal-producing technologies is that it is totally carbon-free and hence generates no carbon dioxide gases -- only oxygen," said Lawrence W. Kavanagh, AISI vice president of manufacturing and technology in a prepared statement.

Another potential advantage is that manufacturers are familiar with the electrolysis process: this is similar to how aluminum gets made.

Tags:
Tech Culture
About the author

    Michael Kanellos is editor at large at CNET News.com, where he covers hardware, research and development, start-ups and the tech industry overseas.

     

    Join the discussion

    Conversation powered by Livefyre

    Show Comments Hide Comments
    Latest Galleries from CNET
    Tech industry's high-flying 2014
    Uber's tumultuous ups and downs in 2014 (pictures)
    The best and worst quotes of 2014 (pictures)
    A roomy range from LG (pictures)
    This plain GE range has all of the essentials (pictures)
    Sony's 'Interview' heard 'round the world (pictures)