Experimental and theoretical efforts were combined in a synergistic approach and the results, published this week in the ASAP section of the journal Nano Letters, will fasten efforts to develop new catalysts.
Our energy-hungry world has become increasingly dependent on new methods to store and convert energy for new, environmentally friendly modes of transportation and electrical energy generation as well as for portable electronics. Mobility — the transport of people and goods — is a socioeconomic reality that will surely increase in the coming years. Hydrogen, which can be produced with little or no harmful emissions, has been projected as a long term solution for a secure energy future. Research into safe and efficient means of hydrogen production, storage, and use is essential to make the “hydrogen economy” a reality.
Car manufactures are showing interest in using solid state hydrogen storage materials, e.g. NaAlH4, as new energy storage media. The functional properties of these materials however have to be improved by catalysts. The effect of earlier catalysts, e.g. Ti, has been difficult to explain. The current results give an unambiguous understanding of the mechanism at work in the new carbon nanomaterial catalysts.
The researchers set out to understand the mechanism behind the catalytic effects of carbon nanomaterials, specifically on the example of sodium alanate, which is a popular material for hydrogen storage studies.
“Now that the catalytic capabilities of carbon nanomaterials have been demonstrated so clearly and the mechanism that makes this behaviour possible has been understood, we expect a strong impulse on putting this effect to use in practical applications.”, says Professor Rajeev Ahuja.
“Certainly, our findings have the strongest impact in the field of hydrogen storage, but beyond that, the same mechanism that we revealed can make carbon nanomaterials a very important catalyst in many other systems as well.”
Researchers printed graphene-like materials with inkjet
18.08.2017 | Aalto University
Superconductivity research reveals potential new state of matter
17.08.2017 | DOE/Los Alamos National Laboratory
Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...
Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...
For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.
While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...
An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.
The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...
A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...
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18.08.2017 | Life Sciences
18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences