Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers harness nature to produce the fuel of the future

31.01.2013
Hydro­gen has tremen­dous poten­tial as an eco-friendly fuel, but it is expen­sive to pro­duce. Now researchers at Prince­ton Uni­ver­sity and Rut­gers Uni­ver­sity have moved a step closer to har­ness­ing nature to pro­duce hydro­gen for us.
The team, led by Prince­ton chem­istry pro­fes­sor Annabella Sel­l­oni, takes inspi­ra­tion from bac­te­ria that make hydro­gen from water using enzymes called di-iron hydro­ge­nases. Selloni’s team uses com­puter mod­els to fig­ure out how to incor­po­rate the magic of these enzymes into the design of prac­ti­cal syn­thetic cat­a­lysts that humans can use to pro­duce hydro­gen from water.

In this lat­est paper, Sel­l­oni and co-authors present a solu­tion to an issue that has dogged the field: the cat­a­lysts designed so far are sus­cep­ti­ble to poi­son­ing by the oxy­gen present dur­ing the reac­tion. By mak­ing changes to the cat­a­lyst to improve the sta­bil­ity of the struc­ture in water, the researchers found that they had also cre­ated a cat­a­lyst that is tol­er­ant to oxy­gen with­out sac­ri­fic­ing effi­ciency. What is more, their arti­fi­cial cat­a­lyst could be made from abun­dant and cheap com­po­nents, such as iron, indi­cat­ing that the cat­a­lyst could be a cost-effective way of pro­duc­ing hydrogen.

Sel­l­oni and her team con­ducted their research in sil­ico — that is, using com­puter mod­el­ing. The goal is to learn enough about how these cat­a­lysts work to some­day cre­ate work­ing cat­a­lysts that can make vast quan­ti­ties of inex­pen­sive hydro­gen for use in vehi­cles and elec­tric­ity production.

The team included Patrick Hoi-Land Sit, an asso­ciate research scholar in chem­istry at Prince­ton; Roberto Car, Princeton’s Ralph W. *31 Dornte Pro­fes­sor in Chem­istry, and Mor­rel H. Cohen, a Senior Chemist at Prince­ton and Mem­ber of the Grad­u­ate Fac­ulty of Rut­gers Uni­ver­sity. Sel­l­oni is Princeton’s David B. Jones Pro­fes­sor of Chemistry.

Read the abstract.

Cita­tion: Sit, Patrick H.-L., Roberto Car, Mor­rel H. Cohen, and Annabella Sel­l­oni. Oxy­gen tol­er­ance of an in silico-designed bioin­spired hydrogen-evolving cat­a­lyst in water. PNAS 2013; pub­lished ahead of print Jan­u­ary 22, 2013, doi:10.1073/pnas.1215149110

This work was sup­ported by the Depart­ment of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Sci­ences, Divi­sion of Mate­ri­als Sci­ences and Engi­neer­ing under Award DE-FG02-06ER-46344. We also used resources of the National Energy Research Sci­en­tific Com­put­ing Cen­ter, which is sup­ported by the Office of Sci­ence of the US Depart­ment of Energy under Con­tract DE-AC02-05CH11231. The team also used com­pu­ta­tional resources from the Prince­ton Insti­tute for Com­pu­ta­tional Sci­ence and Engi­neer­ing (PIC­SciE) and the Office of Infor­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy (OIT) High Per­for­mance Com­put­ing Cen­ter and Visu­al­iza­tion Lab­o­ra­tory at Prince­ton University.

Catherine Zandonella | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.princeton.edu

More articles from Power and Electrical Engineering:

nachricht Philippines’ microsatellite captures best-in-class high-resolution images
22.09.2016 | Hokkaido University

nachricht OLED microdisplays in data glasses for improved human-machine interaction
22.09.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Organische Elektronik, Elektronenstrahl- und Plasmatechnik FEP

All articles from Power and Electrical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: OLED microdisplays in data glasses for improved human-machine interaction

The Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP has been developing various applications for OLED microdisplays based on organic semiconductors. By integrating the capabilities of an image sensor directly into the microdisplay, eye movements can be recorded by the smart glasses and utilized for guidance and control functions, as one example. The new design will be debuted at Augmented World Expo Europe (AWE) in Berlin at Booth B25, October 18th – 19th.

“Augmented-reality” and “wearables” have become terms we encounter almost daily. Both can make daily life a little simpler and provide valuable assistance for...

Im Focus: Artificial Intelligence Helps in the Discovery of New Materials

With the help of artificial intelligence, chemists from the University of Basel in Switzerland have computed the characteristics of about two million crystals made up of four chemical elements. The researchers were able to identify 90 previously unknown thermodynamically stable crystals that can be regarded as new materials. They report on their findings in the scientific journal Physical Review Letters.

Elpasolite is a glassy, transparent, shiny and soft mineral with a cubic crystal structure. First discovered in El Paso County (Colorado, USA), it can also be...

Im Focus: Complex hardmetal tools out of the 3D printer

For the first time, Fraunhofer IKTS shows additively manufactured hardmetal tools at WorldPM 2016 in Hamburg. Mechanical, chemical as well as a high heat resistance and extreme hardness are required from tools that are used in mechanical and automotive engineering or in plastics and building materials industry. Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems IKTS in Dresden managed the production of complex hardmetal tools via 3D printing in a quality that are in no way inferior to conventionally produced high-performance tools.

Fraunhofer IKTS counts decades of proven expertise in the development of hardmetals. To date, reliable cutting, drilling, pressing and stamping tools made of...

Im Focus: Launch of New Industry Working Group for Process Control in Laser Material Processing

At AKL’16, the International Laser Technology Congress held in May this year, interest in the topic of process control was greater than expected. Appropriately, the event was also used to launch the Industry Working Group for Process Control in Laser Material Processing. The group provides a forum for representatives from industry and research to initiate pre-competitive projects and discuss issues such as standards, potential cost savings and feasibility.

In the age of industry 4.0, laser technology is firmly established within manufacturing. A wide variety of laser techniques – from USP ablation and additive...

Im Focus: New laser joining technologies at ‘K 2016’ trade fair

Every three years, the plastics industry gathers at K, the international trade fair for plastics and rubber in Düsseldorf. The Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will also be attending again and presenting many innovative technologies, such as for joining plastics and metals using ultrashort pulse lasers. From October 19 to 26, you can find the Fraunhofer ILT at the joint Fraunhofer booth SC01 in Hall 7.

K is the world’s largest trade fair for the plastics and rubber industry. As in previous years, the organizers are expecting 3,000 exhibitors and more than...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Experts from industry and academia discuss the future mobile telecommunications standard 5G

23.09.2016 | Event News

ICPE in Graz for the seventh time

20.09.2016 | Event News

Using mathematical models to understand our brain

16.09.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Chains of nanogold – forged with atomic precision

23.09.2016 | Life Sciences

New leukemia treatment offers hope

23.09.2016 | Health and Medicine

Self-assembled nanostructures hit their target

23.09.2016 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>