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Jenks Science & Technology forum discusses carbon capture, hospital planning technology

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By Ron Latanision, John Brown, and Walter Hubbard

On Friday, May 10, Peter Baldwin, Past President of Ramgen Power System (Ret.), offered his perspective on evolving Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) opportunities. Ramgen Power Systems had successfully developed a supersonic CO2 compression technology with support from DOE-NETL and Dresser-Rand, intended for use in the, then, emerging power generation CCS applications. Pete led all commercial discussions with CCS system developers, government agencies, users, and funders alike, worldwide.

The CO2 compressor is located between the CCS capture system and the CO2 pipeline, requiring detailed knowledge of both systems and their operating parameters. The industry is now reconstituting itself to support the production of Blue H2, with the associated CO2 collected in the emerging CO2 Hubs. These CO2 Hubs and their piping systems will also support any CO2 Removal (CDR) projects, including the emerging Direct Air Capture (DAC) systems.

This presentation was technically full and provides us the opportunity, with some homework, to understand the state of the planet regarding CO2. Pete’s presentation and the Q&A that followed was both insightful and heartening. What seems clear is that not many inhabitants of our planet recognize the fragility of our environment. Responding to the circumstances we face now and going forward requires public will, political will and, importantly, technical will.

At this moment, it appears that public and political will are colored by a lack of information and understanding. So, it seems that technologists must take the lead and alert our neighbors and policymakers while beginning to focus the myriad of technologies that are being considered/developed into those that are most likely to be successful.

On Friday, May 24, Jane Kent spoke about Hospital Planning Going Forward and her work in maintaining facilities documentation at The University of Michigan Medicine. That organization continues to grow and with it the amount of information that needs to be managed. She described the use of commercially available Matterport Scanning Technology to track and catalog facility changes.  Matterport focuses on digitizing and indexing the built world by means of a 3D data platform that enables a space to be turned into an accurate digital twin which can then be used to design, build, and operate, any given space. Jane manages the Matterport Scanning project.  Jane and her colleagues have led Michigan Medicine to become a world leading provider in healthcare, education and research.

An important footnote, Jane is the youngest daughter of a historic figure in the evolution of The Jenks Center, Jim Kent. We were pleased to welcome Jane’s mom, Carol, and her brother, Jim, to the Wilson Forum. They did not heckle the speaker!

UPCOMING LECTURES:

On June 14th, Albert Moussa, Founder, BlazeTech will speak about a subject that has gotten much  public attention recently, namely airline safety. His presentation is on How Safe are the Friendly Skies?

And, on June 28th, Walter Hubbard, President, PC QuickHelp, Inc., will moderate a summary discussion of the Forum’s presentations in 2023-2024 on The Electric Grid and Climate Issues. This conversation will guide the program on these important topics in the 2024-2025 season of The Wilson Forum.

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All Wilson Science & Technology Forum presentations are recorded and can be streamed free on demand at the Wilson Forum’s website, https://jenksst.blogspot.com/ 

WinCAM broadcasts recordings of Forum presentations at 3 pm on Mondays and Fridays. For the schedule, go to https://wincam.org/schedule/education/ and search for “Wilson.”

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The Wilson Forum’s meetings are via Zoom, usually at 10:30 am on the second and fourth Fridays of each month.

To learn of upcoming Forum speakers, you can check the Jenks Center’s website https://www.jenkscenter.org/  (events > daytime > Wilson Forum).

Alternatively, you can receive notifications of upcoming talks by emailing a request to be added to the Forum’s roster to rlatanision@alum.mit.edu.  

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