SpaceX to start a program to take CO2 out of the atmosphere

Musk looks on at SpaceX Falcon 9 post-launch news conference in Cape Canaveral
Image via Mike Blake /Reuters

According to a tweet by CEO Elon Musk, SpaceX is starting a program to take carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere to convert it into rocket fuel.

Musk added that this program will be important for the overall Mars mission goal.

However, the CEO did not provide any more details. Nor did he note how the company would do it or using what vehicle the company would recapture the CO2.

Musk, of course, funds the XPRIZE, allowing teams to compete for funding for CO2 recapture. To win the overall prize of $50 million, teams will need to do the following:

  • Demonstrate CO2 removal at the 1000 tonne per year scale.
  • Show model costs at the million ton per year scale.
  • Present a plan to sustainably reach a gigatonne per year scale in the future.

In addition to the main XPRIZE, a student XPRIZE is also available to fund carbon removal or the development of key supportive technologies.

University of Toronto team wins $250,000 XPRIZE award funded by Elon Musk

It has been a busy few months for SpaceX. Earlier this month, NASA awarded the space company three additional Crew Dragon flights to the International Space Station.

The extension of the existing contract is due to Boeing’s issues with its own crewed space program.

When Boeing is up and running, the two companies will ferry astronauts rotationally.

About Scott Nordlund 556 Articles
Originally from the West Coast, Scott is an avid writer & EV enthusiast now living in Ottawa. He holds a MA in Political Science and once played professional football in the German Football League. Email scott@driveteslacanada.ca