Could we expose the smoke to different substances reactive to substances in the smoke, that will create a liquid or solid substance, in order to separate, for instance carbon monoxide, from the gaseous mix? Then use another substance to do another until only carbon dioxide is left which is useful to oit out fires once compressed. Pre-combustion washings aren't perfect. Just thought getting a conversation started among chemists might help. Thanks. :)

  • $\begingroup$ Coal emits carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, mercury, arsenic, and benzene. $\endgroup$ – Donnotobo Feb 5 at 17:11
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    $\begingroup$ Given that there is typically incomplete combustion burning coal will probably create thousands of compounds, most in trace amounts. $\endgroup$ – MaxW Feb 5 at 17:34
  • $\begingroup$ Are the trace amounts much of a concern? Doesn't an incomplete combustion mean it can still burn? If not, misc. Trace amounts maybe still could remain in the compressed CO2. $\endgroup$ – Donnotobo Feb 5 at 20:05
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    $\begingroup$ "Are the trace amounts much of a concern?" Of course! some, as mentioned by @MaxW, are highly toxic. What is 1,000 l. sewage with 1 l. of fine wine? "Sewage". What is 1,000 l. wine with 1 l. of sewage?? Still sewage... even though it's a "trace" amount. $\endgroup$ – DrMoishe Pippik Feb 6 at 0:03
  • $\begingroup$ I suppose you could use a basic solution such as NaOH(aq) to create carbonates and sulphates. Then perhaps a stepwise precipitation with, say, Ba(II) to separate them. Although it wouldn't be economically convenient. $\endgroup$ – chemicalromance Feb 6 at 13:53

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