A team of Aberdeen experts are set to find out if they have made the final of a competition that would net them a £15 million prize.
Academics from the University of Aberdeen have developed a machine that can capture carbon from factories and turn it into a substance used to make common household goods, such as paper.
The machine has been put forward for the Carbon XPrize – a contest whereby judges pick an innovation that can change the world.
A panel visited the university last month and are now considering their findings.
“Judging is still in progress, with the results announced in April,” said Dr Mohammed Imbabi, who teaches civil engineering at the university, and is leading the project.
He added: “There have also been other developments – and we have been put forward for another prize.”
The project is one of 16 to make it to the finals of the 2018 Shell Springboard Award which awards a grand prize of £150,000 to the best UK initiative to reduce carbon.
Dr Imbabi added: “We are also eligible to win one of six regional prizes that are up for grabs.”
Winning that would earn the team £40,000 to be spent on developing their initiative.
To help them, the team have formed a company CCM (UK) Ltd and are in the process of getting £5m of investment.
Those involved in the enterprise have proved it works on a small scale and the latest challenge is to prove to the judges that their device can work on a bigger scale.
Once it has converted the carbon into a paste-like material, the substance can be sold at £400 per tonne.
If they win the $20m (£15.3m) Carbon XPrize, the team plan to spend the money on developing their device worldwide.
Dr Imbabi added: “We’re up against strong competition from other entries across the world but winning would give us a fantastic opportunity to develop the company and help many businesses reduce their carbon footprint.”