Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

1/15/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Process takes its cue from natural photosynthesis

Clean, ever available solar energy has always faced a major roadblock when coming to practical application: The sun is only available for about 12 hours a day. That hurdle may have been climbed, as scientists have now built a system that converts the sun's energy into hydrogen fuel during the day. This stores the energy for later use, allowing people to power their devices even at night.

Tom Meyer at the Energy Frontier Research Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill says they have built a system that converts the sun's energy into hydrogen fuel and stores it for later use.

Tom Meyer at the Energy Frontier Research Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill says they have built a system that converts the sun's energy into hydrogen fuel and stores it for later use.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

1/15/2014 (1 year ago)

Published in Green

Keywords: Tom Meyer, solar energy, nano technology, hydrogen


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Tom Meyer at the Energy Frontier Research Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill says they have built a system that converts the sun's energy into hydrogen fuel and stores it for later use.

"So called 'solar fuels' like hydrogen offer a solution to how to store energy for nighttime use by taking a cue from natural photosynthesis," Meyer says.

Find that gift for that special someone by going here --

"Our new findings may provide a last major piece of a puzzle for a new way to store the Sun's energy - it could be a tipping point for a solar energy future," he said.

Designed by Meyer and his colleagues, along with Greg Parsons' group at North Carolina State is known as a dye-sensitized photo-electrosynthesis cell, or DSPEC, which generates hydrogen fuel by using solar energy to split water into its component parts.

Once separated, hydrogen is sequestered and stored, while the byproduct, oxygen is released into the air.

"But splitting water is extremely difficult to do," Meyer says. "You need to take four electrons away from two water molecules, transfer them somewhere else, and make hydrogen, and, once you have done that, keep the hydrogen and oxygen separated. How to design molecules capable of doing that is a really big challenge that we've begun to overcome," he said.

Investigating DSPECs for years, Meyer's design has two basic components: a molecule and a nano-particle. The molecule, called a chromophore-catalyst assembly, absorbs the sun's energy and then activates the catalyst to rip electrons away from water.

The nano-particle, to which thousands of chromophore-catalyst assemblies are tethered, is part of a film of nano-particles that shuttles the electrons away to make the hydrogen fuel.

Much work remains to be done. The system has continually crashed because either the chromophore-catalyst assembly kept breaking away from the nano-particles or because the electrons couldn't be shuttled away quickly enough to make hydrogen.

Meyer turned to the Parsons group to use a technique that coated the nano-particle, atom by atom, with a thin layer of a material called titanium dioxide. Researchers found that using even finer layers, the nano-particle could carry away electrons far more rapidly than before, with the freed electrons available to make hydrogen.

They have since designed a protective coating that keeps the chromophore-catalyst assembly tethered firmly to the nano-particle, ensuring that the assembly stayed on the surface.

Pope Francis calls for your 'prayer and action'...

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for July 2015
Universal:
That political responsibility may be lived at all levels as a high form of charity.
Evangelization: That, amid social inequalities, Latin American Christians may bear witness to love for the poor and contribute to a more fraternal society.



Comments


More Green

More discoveries about Pluto: New Horizons finds second icy mountain range and new moon Watch

Image of

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Many people around the world have been celebrating the successful flyby, from the New Horizons NASA program, to the farthest planet in the solar system, Pluto. After the initial success and discovery of the first icy mountain range, the spacecraft found another equally ... continue reading


California farmers given mandate: Stop pumping form the San Joaquin River Watch

Image of A group of farmers has now been ordered to stop pumping water from a branch of the San Joaquin River. The severe measure was in order to protect waterways that are going dry during its drought.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

They were given multiple warnings, but now its official. The State Water Resources Control board has issued a cease and desist order against an irrigation district that has been draining the San Joaquin River. The district has repeatedly failed to obey a ... continue reading


Unusual, new winged dinosaur fossil unearthed in China Watch

Image of

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

An almost complete fossil of a feathered bird-like dinosaur was dug up by scientists in northeastern China. Although the creature has wings, they doubt it could really fly, due to its proportion. Scientists speculate the wings were used similarly to the peacock. This ... continue reading


Pluto finally exposed: Pictures from Pluto reach Earth after amazing NASA mission Watch

Image of Images of Pluto, the lone dwarf planet is finally revealed to humankind

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pluto has finally revealed itself to humankind, after being a mystical planet located beyond the depths of the Milky Way for so long. NASA's New Horizons spacecraft has finally sent images of Pluto to Earth last Tuesday. With the lone planet, located 3 billion miles ... continue reading


El Nino to the rescue: Is relief for drought-stricken California on its way? Watch

Image of

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Over the years, El Nino has provided relief to drought-stricken areas in the U.S. The current weather forecast predicts hotter and drier weathers will be felt in the eastern part of the world, concerning Australia, Asia and the majority of the Pacific while wetter ... continue reading


Carnivorous plant quits insect-killing ways to become 'bat landlord' Watch

Image of A special species of bat - the Hardwicke's woolly bat-roost inside the plants, and nowhere else. Bat babies were often found snuggled next to their parents.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A most unconventional living arrangement has been struck in the jungles of Borneo. The carnivorous plant, Nepenthes hemsleyana lures bats to nest in its pitcher-shaped leaves. The bats are left undigested, and as part of their agreement, the bats defecate their ... continue reading


Will El Nino bring relief to drought-stricken California? Watch

Image of The State of California, along with the rest of the United States, that is reliant on California's crops to feed it, is praying for rain to end the state's worst drought in history.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The State of California, along with the rest of the United States, that is reliant on California's crops to feed it, is praying for rain to end the state's worst drought in history. Scientists say that El Nino weather patterns could mean more rain down the line - or ... continue reading


Mysterious massive bird migration leaves popular bird location a dead zone Watch

Image of Empty eggs were all that could be found in the once popular bird location.

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Thousands of birds have left the Seahorse Key abruptly, leaving their nests and eggs behind. The mysterious phenomena has left scientists and bird watchers puzzled, especially when they found that the place is negative from any contamination. Biologists explain that ... continue reading


No longer little green men? Aliens may look more like us than traditionally believed Watch

Image of

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

People have been conditioned to believe extraterrestrial life, or aliens, will look nothing like us. Aliens are commonly shown with large heads on tiny bodies with a pair of saucer-like eyes. They have long, thin arms and limbs, with the number of fingers being more or ... continue reading


TIME TO ACT: Vatican's Secretary of State says world leaders must heed Pope's encyclical Watch

Image of Cardinal Parolin spoke on the importance of

By Elise Harris, CNA/EWTN News

Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican's Secretary of State, has expressed his hope that Pope Francis' recent environmental encyclical will have a strong impact on the United Nations' three major gatherings this year, and will inspire global powers not only to ... continue reading


All Green News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Exodus 33:7-11; 34:5-9, 28
7 Moses used to take the Tent and pitch it outside ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 103:6-7, 8-9, 10-11, 12-13
6 Yahweh acts with uprightness, with justice to all ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 13:35-43
35 This was to fulfil what was spoken by the prophet: ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 28th, 2015 Image

St. Innocent I
July 28: Innocent was born at Albano, Italy. He became Pope, succeeding ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter