H2O2. Scientists managed to produce fuel using seawater

H2O2. Scientists managed to produce fuel using seawater

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It is the first photocatalytic method of H2O2 production that achieves a high enough efficiency so that H2O2 can be used in a fuel cell.

The researchers, led by Shunichi Fukuzumi from Osaka University, have published a paper on the new method of photocatalytic hydrogen peroxide production in a recent issue of Nature Communications.

"The most abundant resource on Earth, seawater, is used to produce a solar fuel that is H2O2," Fukuzumi told

The biggest advantage of using liquid H2O2 instead of hydrogen gas (H2), as most fuel cells use today, is that the liquid form is much easier to store at high densities. Typically, H2 gas must be either highly compressed, or in certain cases, cooled to its liquid state at cryogenic temperatures. In contrast, liquid H2O2 can be stored and transported at high densities much more easily and safely.

The problem is that, until now, there has been no efficient photocatalytic method of producing liquid H2O2. There are ways to produce H2O2 that do not use sunlight, but require so much energy that they are not practical for use in a method that is intended to produce energy.

In the new study, the researchers developed a new photoelectrochemical cell, which is basically a solar cell that produces H2O2. When sunlight illuminates the photocatalyst, it absorbs photons and uses the energy to initiate chemical reactions (oxidation of seawater and reduction of O2), ultimately producing H2O2.

After illumination of the cell for 24 hours, the H2O2 concentration in seawater reached approximately 48 mM, which is much higher than the previously recorded values ​​of approximately 2 mM in pure water. The reason for this large difference is that the negatively charged chlorine in seawater is primarily responsible for the enhancement of photocatalytic activity.

Overall, the system has a total solar electricity efficiency of 0.28%. (The photocatalytic production of H2O2 from seawater has an efficiency of 0.55%, and the fuel cell has an efficiency of 50%).

Although the total efficiency compares favorably with that of some other sources of solar energy in electricity, such as switchgrass biofuel (0.2%), it is still much lower than the efficiency of conventional solar cells. The researchers hope that efficiency can be improved in the future by using better materials in the photoelectrochemical cell, and they also plan to find methods to reduce the cost of production.

"In the future, we intend to work on developing a low-cost method for large-scale production of H2O2 from seawater," Fukuzumi said. "This can replace the current high-cost H2O2 production of H2 (from natural gas mainly) and O2."

Europa Press

Video: Synthetic Fuel from Seawater: The Science (June 2022).


  1. Ceileachan

    gee chipmunk =)

  2. Nalmaran

    Yes thanks

  3. Mayhew

    He withdrew from the conversation

  4. Cortez

    You are not mistaken

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