Say hello to the Zem car: a solar-powered car that not only provides clean transportation but also actively removes carbon emissions from the air.

The car was developed by TU/ecomotive, a student team based at the Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands. The innovative Zem car was constructed using recycled plastics made by a 3D printer.

The project was a collaborative effort, with students working together and partner sponsors contributing materials and expertise.

The Zem car is equipped with lithium-ion batteries from Cleantron and uses solar panels for up to 15% of its charge from Watllab. In addition, it undergoes carbon analysis using SimaPro software. The car features a carbon capture device.

Driven by the goal of “zero emissions mobility,” TU/ecomotive realized that to achieve carbon neutrality, the Zem car had to remove carbon from the atmosphere.

The team’s solution involved incorporating filters beneath the car that capture carbon dioxide as it moves. The captured carbon dioxide is then removed at a special EV charging station. After removal, the carbon dioxide is safely stored or repurposed for clean fuels.

The current carbon capture capacity of the Zem car is modest. The Zem car would have to drive more than 200,000 miles to remove the same amount of carbon dioxide that a single tree removes in a year. Nevertheless, the team is actively working to enhance the car’s capabilities.

Moreover, the project sets an inspiring example, showcasing what is achievable in terms of sustainable transportation. As Nikki Okkels, the external relations manager for TU/ecomotive, said in an interview with CNN:

We pulled it off: Thrifty-five students with a lot of eagerness but a lot less experience than the main industry that we are competing with. We’re just showing the big industry what is possible.

Image Source: Panel the Planet,