The production of hydrogen fuel through hydrogen may be about to change, thanks to a new combination. Hydrogen is probably the cleanest source of energy, it is renewable, and its only by-product is water.
So far the major drawback to using this fuel has been the high cost and complexity of producing fuel cells, but thanks to a team of researchers from the Argonne National Laboratory of Illinois who is working with scientists at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT), everything may be about to change, as this team has discovered a new way to produce fuel from hydrogen.
The base goes on to produce hydrogen using a simple combination of sunlight and photosensitive lipids, and this new research makes it possible to produce hydrogen efficiently and at a reduced cost. This new study states that it is possible to produce hydrogen using water and sunlight, and with the use of special components such as titanium dioxide, which will act as a photocatalyst.
The team inserted a photosensitive protein into nanodiscs, created from circular fragments of cell membrane composed of a double layer of lipids. Then, in order to generate the photocatalysis process, the nanodiscs were dissolved in water and together with titanium dioxide, and platinum was also added to the mixture, to increase the efficiency of the reaction.
Then, they tested with two different types of light, one with the green tint and the other with the white tint. After testing with both, they found that hydrogen production was 74 times higher, using white light, although with either light, production maintained a constant rate over three hours.
It seems that this approach using biological elements and materials may be the right way to finally make hydrogen into the fuel of the future, but until this reaches the market, we will have to wait.