Startups are working to drastically reduce energy usage in separation processes that yield fuel, plastics, fresh water, and more.
Via Separations believes its technology can reduce a major source of energy consumption by 90%.
The MIT Engine accelerator-backed startup, and several other under-the-radar companies, are working on reducing energy consumption in industrial separations, a lesser known sector of our energy consumption mix.
Industrial separations account for 10%-15% of US energy consumption. At their most basic level, these processes make substances purer: Hydrocarbons are separated from crude oil, ethylene from ethane, and water from saltwater.