What is it about?
Hydrogen is one of the ‘clean fuels’ we hope will provide us with sustainable green energy. One of the ways to produce hydrogen is by using light to ‘split’ water. To do this at scale, you need a ‘catalyst’ – something that will speed up the process. One of the catalysts used is potassium niobite. It has a high ‘energy gap’, meaning that it takes a lot of energy to make the process work. If you can make the ‘energy gap’ smaller, you need less energy to make the process work. Scientists can make the ‘energy gap’ smaller using a process called ‘doping’. This means adding metal atoms to help your material absorb more light. In this study, the scientists worked out that water splitting works best if you add silver atoms to your catalyst. They also found that they could reduce carbon dioxide levels by using manganese instead.
Photo by Darren Halstead on Unsplash
Why is it important?
KEY TAKEAWAY: As we try to reduce our use of fossil fuels, we need to find other fuels that can be produced with less damage to the environment. This sort of project is helping us work out the most efficient – and therefore least damaging – way to make hydrogen fuel.
Read the Original
This page is a summary of: Metal-doped KNbO3 for visible light photocatalytic water splitting: A first principles investigation, Applied Physics Letters, August 2021, American Institute of Physics, DOI: 10.1063/5.0058065.
You can read the full text:
Food waste can be processed to make clean fuel.
Scientists have found an economical approach to generating clean biofuels in an environmentally friendly manner.
Artificial intelligence is helping make wind power more reliable
Clean energy options all need to be improved to be able to take over from fossil fuels. This is one example of how scientists are managing to make clean energy production more efficient and predictable.
Improving current green energy technology so it is a realistic alternative to fossil fuels
Scientists have worked out how to make solar power work more effectively. This could help us move more quickly to a low-carbon future and meet net-zero targets.
Climate Change Knowledge Cooperative
Explore the wider collection of climate change research summaries.
Haber-Bosch 2.0: Creating a carbon-free energy landscape with a second ammonia revolution
Ammonia has always played a pivotal role in reshaping the progress of human society. The invention of the Haber-Bosch process revolutionized how the world produced food and now green ammonia holds the potential to reshape the current energy landscape by reducing direct carbon emissions and offering developing nations a means to abate poverty.
Be the first to contribute to this page