‘This unassisted water splitting, which is very rare, does not require expensive or scarce resources.’
Team reports first ‘unassisted’ water splitting using only hematite and silicon as solar absorbers,
Finding an efficient solar water splitting method to mine electron-rich hydrogen for clean power has been thwarted by the poor performance of hematite. But by ‘re-growing’ the mineral’s surface, a smoother version of hematite doubled electrical yield, opening a new door to energy-harvesting artificial photosynthesis, according to a report published online today in the journal Nature Communications.
Re-grown hematite proved to be a better power generating anode, producing a record low turn-on voltage that enabled the researchers to be the first to use earth-abundant hematite and silicon as the sole light absorbers in artificial photosynthesis, said Boston College associate professor of chemistry Dunwei Wang, a lead author of the report.
The new hydrogen harvesting process achieved an overall efficiency of 0.91 percent, a ‘modest’ mark in and of itself, but the first ‘meaningful efficiency ever measured by hematite and amorphous silicon, two of the most abundant elements on Earth,’ the team reported.
‘By simply smoothing the surface characteristics of hematite, this close cousin of rust can be improved to couple with silicon, which is derived from sand, to achieve complete water splitting for solar hydrogen generation,’ said Wang, whose research focuses on discovering new methods to generate clean energy. ‘This unassisted water splitting, which is very rare, does not require expensive or scarce resources.’
Wang said the findings represent an important step toward realizing the potential performance theoretical models have predicted for hematite, an iron oxide similar to rust.
‘This offers new hope that efficient and inexpensive solar fuel production by readily available natural resources is within reach,’ said Wang. ‘Getting there will contribute to a sustainable future powered by renewable energy.’
The team, which included researchers from Boston College, UC Berkeley and China’s University of Science and Technology, decided to focus on hematite’s surface imperfections, which have been found in earlier studies to limit ‘turn-on’ voltage required to jump-start photoelectrochemistry, the central process behind using artificial photosynthesis to capture and store solar energy in hydrogen gas.
The team re-evaluated hematite surface features using a synchrotron particle accelerator at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. They established a new ‘re-growth’ strategy that applied an acidic solution to the material under intense heat, a process that simultaneously reduced ridges and filled depressions, smoothing the surface.
Tests immediately showed an improvement in turn-on voltage, as well as an increase in photovoltage from 0.24 volts to 0.80 volts, a dramatic increase in power generation.
The team reported that further modifications to the new hematite-silicon method make it amenable to large-scale utilization. Furthermore, the ‘re-growth’ technique may be applicable to other materials under study for additional breakthroughs in artificial photosynthesis.
The Latest on: Energy harvesting
via Google News
The Latest on: Energy harvesting
- Global Energy Harvesting Systems Market Research Report 2021 - Impact of COVID-19 on the Marketon December 3, 2021 at 4:21 am
Pages Report] Check for Discount on Global Energy Harvesting Systems Market Research Report 2021 - Impact of COVID-19 on the Market report by Maia Research. Energy harvesting (also known as power ...
- TW Electronics Chooses Nowi as a Technology Partner to Develop Remote Controls with Unlimited Battery Lifeon December 2, 2021 at 5:13 am
TW Electronics announces today that it is working with Nowi's energy harvesting power management solution to power its TV remote controls, as an option to conventional disposable batteries. By ...
- Professor Mustafa Arafa Awarded for Years of Research on Sustainable Energy Harvestingon December 2, 2021 at 12:18 am
As the need for renewable energy sources becomes more dire, AUC Professor Mustafa Arafa’s research in low-cost, sustainable energy harvesting has become all the more crucial. That’s why AUC awarded ...
- Global Energy Harvesting Market 2021 Size, Share, Comprehensive Research Study, Future Plans, Competitive Landscape and Forecast to 2027on December 1, 2021 at 11:02 am
The latest research study titled Global Energy Harvesting Market Research Report 2021-2027 from MarketandResearch.biz provides readers with details on strategic planning and tactical business ...
- Webinar: The New Energy Landscape—Evolution of the Smart, Resilient Homeon December 1, 2021 at 6:46 am
Reserve your spot for a free webinar exploring the advancing sector of smart home energy systems, with a focus on energy harvesting, usage, monitoring, storage, and load shifting.Lake City, Colo., Dec ...
- Concrete Evidence: Cement-Based Energy Material for Building Net Zero Energy Structureson November 23, 2021 at 8:50 pm
Smart cities that champion sustainable, “net-zero” energy consumption are no longer an all-new concept. However, for the building sector, achieving this ...
- New Scottish consortium launched to support low-level wind energyon November 22, 2021 at 2:47 am
Katrick Technologies, AGS Airports Limited, and the University of Strathclyde, to unlock low-level wind power.
- The rise of 3D printed solar energy treeson November 20, 2021 at 10:06 pm
With the production of artificial electricity harvesting trees that have the potential to be infinitely replicated, we can now produce energy not by wiping out whole forests but rather by adding trees ...
- Global Energy Harvesting System Market grow at 10.2% from 2021 to 2027 | Qualiket Researchon November 10, 2021 at 11:36 pm
Dallas, Texas, United states, Nov. 11, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Global Energy Harvesting System Market size was valued at USD 452.2 million in 2020 and is expected to grow at a compound annual ...
- Energy Harvesting System Market Projected to Hit $1,057.7 Million by 2030on November 10, 2021 at 4:31 am
Increase in demand for light energy harvesting, vibration energy harvesting along with technological advancement drive growth of energy harvesting system market PORTLAND, OREGON, UNITED STATES ...
via Bing News