Produced starch from carbon dioxide – it’s possible!
What exactly is starch?
What is the process of obtaining starch from CO2 and how does it work?
Starch from carbon dioxide – a fledgling process with favorable prognosis
Probably, until recently, it would not have occurred to us that we can obtain starch from carbon dioxide. Until now, we associated its production only with plants that contain a lot of starch. Potatoes – we all know and like them. However, a lot has changed in this matter. Starch from carbon dioxide – it’s possible!
Starch is simply a carbohydrate (plant polysaccharide), which consists of single units of glucose. These units are connected by special bonds whose task is to store energy. Starch is our main source of energy in the diet. Therefore, it is an extremely important component of our daily diet. Due to the ever-growing population, and with it the growing demand for food, agricultural producers began to use more pesticides and fertilizers in their crops. All this to make the most of the land on which we plant edible plants. However, we know that these measures are not healthy for people or the ecosystem. Scientists from the Chinese Academy of Sciences began to develop an alternative method of obtaining starch. This will seem impossible to most of us, but they have proven that it is possible to synthesize starch from carbon dioxide (CO2). This is an important message for the times in which we live today, given the huge emission of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
In order for the process of obtaining starch from carbon dioxide to run properly, we must use the right chemical catalysts, and then move on to the use of artificial and natural enzymes. Using the right doses of the above ingredients, we have a real chance to obtain starch from carbon dioxide about eight times faster than from plants. The whole process takes place in eleven chemical reactions. CO2 scientists first reduce to methanol. They do this using an organic catalyst. The obtained methanol must then be subjected to enzymes that will produce sugar from it, which is finally changed into starch.
It should be noted that the starch extraction process described above has not yet officially entered the market. First, the whole process needs to be thoroughly refined and the production costs of such starch should be comparable to its traditional form of production. The technology in question has a lot of potential in the context of dealing with two major problems facing humanity. These problems are: excessive emission of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, a large amount of exploited water resources and the growing demand for food. We probably still have a number of studies ahead of us on obtaining starch from CO2, which – hopefully – will contribute to the implementation of the discussed technology.