A Team of Researchers led by Scientists from the Australia’s Curtin University have created a much cheaper and environment friendly way of turning solar energy into clean fuels like hydrogen.
The Team developed tiny nanocrystals as highly efficient catalyst to generate solar energy for the production of fuels, researchers explained in the journal which is published on Tuesday.
Dr. Guohua Jia , Lead Researcher from Curtin’s School of Molecular and Life Sciences explained “Previously, in order to use catalysts to derive energy from sunlight and transfer it into clean fuels such as hydrogen, we would have had to use cadmium-based semiconductors in combination with expensive noble metals including platinum, iridium and ruthenium,”
“However, the high toxicity of cadmium and the high cost of noble metals are considerable obstacles to their widespread use.”
The team which is led by Dr.Jia has now invented a tiny crystal that do not contain any noble and toxic metals that can be directly used as environment friendly catalyst to convert solar energy into hydrogen.
With hydrogen considered instrumental in the transition to a low-carbon economy, Jia believes the method could revolutionize processes with high energy costs like powering cars as well as various industrial processes.
“These nanomaterials may be of great interest to the energy industry, as they are made from cheap and near-abundant elements and offer industries a potential cleaner and cheaper fuel source,” Guohua Jia said.
Reference: Curtin University
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