"From conversations, we've noticed that current CO2 supply from fossil fuel sources typically is not addressed by every farm's Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). There are two key factors that are taken into account when creating a carbon footprint comparison between fossil fuel-based CO2 and atmospheric using a Skytree unit: The source of the current CO2 supplier (e.g., oil refinery, fertilizer plant) and the energy mix of the farm (how much renewable electricity). This information creates visibility on the LCA impact of switching to Skytree's onsite CO2 generation," says Rob van Straten, Skytree CEO.
Skytree launches Skytree Cumulus, an inaugural Direct Air Capture (DAC) modular unit now available to order. Once installed onsite at a vertical farm, greenhouse, or any CEA business, the device captures CO2 from the ambient air and makes it available in the production of food, algae, vaccines, and flowers.
Rob van Straten (Photo credits: Tilen Sisel)
Rob adds, "By enabling the generation of CO2 onsite at farms and greenhouses, we are taking a significant step forward in helping CEA businesses reduce their carbon footprint and transition away from the fossil fuel industry as a source for CO2 supply. This is an incredibly exciting moment for Skytree as we move forward with the commercialization of our first unit for onsite carbon capture and reutilization."
How it works
Skytree's proprietary DAC technology captures CO2 from ambient air, filters it using a patented process, and stores it in pressurized buffer tanks from where it can be accessed and reused by any business in regular need of concentrated CO2.
Skytree Cumulus, the first commercially available modular unit, will deliver a reliable and uninterrupted supply of up to 10 kg of CO2 in 24 hours, delivering clean and affordable CO2 to CEA businesses while alleviating procurement and transport challenges. Users in need of additional CO2 can acquire and connect additional units.
Operating independently of oil and gas
"CEA businesses sourcing CO2 from the fossil fuel industry may be surprised to learn that every step of the process, from capture to cleaning to liquifying to storing in cylinders and then transporting to farms, adds up to 50% harmful emissions," Rob shares.
According to him, every ton of CO2 captured at an oil refinery can lead to 1.5 tons of emissions released back into the atmosphere. "We're providing CEA businesses the opportunity to operate independently of the oil and gas industry while enjoying guaranteed access to carbon dioxide, all without the headaches of cost increases and supply chain challenges or having to deal with the ordering and handling of metal cylinders."
The Skytree Cumulus (Photo credits: Tilen Sisel)
Introductory Offer for DAC Pioneers
Skytree also announced the launch of its Pioneer Program, offering early adopters the opportunity to experience the benefits of Cumulus and DAC technology at a reduced price for a limited time. Participants will get priority delivery when Cumulus units ship in early 2024.
In addition to its debut unit, Skytree is also developing a second, larger DAC unit to expand to building materials and enable other hard-to-abate industrial industries to permanently move away from carbon dioxide sourced from the fossil fuel industry. Capable of generating up to 400 kg of CO2 per day, Skytree expects the larger unit to become available in the second half of 2024.
"Soon, we will publish some customer cases from our pilot projects, and next year, we will introduce a system with a much higher daily CO2 capacity. The current system is well-suited for a lot of vertical farms. However, some of them, as well as greenhouses, have higher CO2 requirements to boost their yield," Rob shares.
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