Friday, December 13, 2013

Carbon Eating Initiatives

Yesterday, I spotted this article about a carbon negative bicycle that takes polluted air and cleans it.

This reminded me of an idea I had some years ago which still doesn’t seem to have reached fruition:  Putting carbon filters on skyscraper elevator shafts.

In short, an elevator shaft has to equalize pressure at the top of the shaft, as the elevator moves up and down - otherwise it would create a vacuum.  When you consider that standard 5000lb passenger elevators have hoistway dimensions of about 8ft by 11ft, you’re moving a column of air that’s 88 sq ft in size.  Assuming 40 floors at 10ft per floor that’s 400ft.  From here, we can calculate that 400 x 88 is 35,200 cubic feet of air being shifted every time an elevator goes to the top of a skyscraper.  Multiply that by four elevator shafts and you see that’s a lot of air basically being pumped about by a piston (the elevator itself).

So if this is being sucked in, then blown out again, why not put a carbon filter over it?