BIG NET, from Oak Ridge National Laboratory, ReactWell, and Holocene Climate Corp., is a negative emission technology (NET) that captures carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere through direct air capture. The technology involves a new class of absorbents called bis-imino-guanidines (BIGs) that absorb CO2 from air into aqueous solutions and convert it into crystalline carbonate salts.
BIG NET offers an energy-efficient and cost-effective solution to addressing climate change through direct air capture of CO2. Once scaled up, optimized and deployed worldwide, the technology has the potential to remove billions of tons of CO2 from the atmosphere. The recent National Academy of Sciences report on negative emission technologies highlighted the immense potential for direct air capture technologies, especially when their costs drop below $100/ton CO2: “Future economic demand for $100/ton CO2 direct air capture could be in the tens of gigatons per year.” Therefore, with an estimated cost of about $85/ton CO2, BIG NET has the potential to finally unlock the negative emissions market.