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Reference Number EP/P008097/1
Title Nanostructured metal oxides for solar fuels
Status Completed
Energy Categories HYDROGEN and FUEL CELLS(Hydrogen, Hydrogen production) 10%;
RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES(Solar Energy, Photovoltaics) 50%;
Research Types Basic and strategic applied research 100%
Science and Technology Fields ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Chemical Engineering) 100%
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Dr S Eslava
No email address given
Chemical Engineering
University of Bath
Award Type Standard
Funding Source EPSRC
Start Date 01 March 2017
End Date 31 July 2018
Duration 17 months
Total Grant Value £100,740
Industrial Sectors No relevance to Underpinning Sectors
Region South West
Programme NC : Physical Sciences
Investigators Principal Investigator Dr S Eslava , Chemical Engineering, University of Bath (100.000%)
Web Site
Abstract The Sun could potentially supply enough energy for all our needs, but its energy needs to be harvested and stored efficiently. A sustainable route to capture energy from the Sun involves using photocatalytic materials that, upon solar irradiation, rearrange the electrons in molecules such as water and carbon dioxide and consequently form fuels such as hydrogen and hydrocarbons and harmless oxygen. This route, typically called artificial photosynthesis, has the potential to ensure affordable supplies of clean fuels and feedstocks for energy, pharmaceuticals, plastics and textiles, simply using inexhaustible resources.The aim of this project is to make a breakthrough in the synthesis of metal oxides with tailored nanostructure to improve the efficiency and competitiveness of artificial photosynthesis devices in the formation of clean fuels such as hydrogen. In order to achieve this, graphene oxide flakes, carbon mats known for its nano and two-dimensionality, will be systematically studied as a sacrificial support for the formation of metal oxide nanoflakes replicating the graphene oxide shape. This will lead to a more optimised morphology to exploit the qualities of metal oxides in artificial photosynthesis.The project will follow a multidisciplinary approach involving the undertaking of different activities, namely wet chemical syntheses, devices construction and advanced characterisation to achieve its aim. Each of these activities will address a different challenge. Through wet chemical syntheses, the project will aim to understand the mechanisms to replicate the nano- and two-dimensionality of graphene oxide on metal oxides. The second activity will concentrate on finding the best routes to apply the novel metal oxides for solar fuels production. The third activity will have the challenge of characterising the photocatalytic nanostructured materials in such a way to relate their properties to their activity, allowing the optimisation of the devices.Preparing metal oxides with nano- and two-dimensionality as in graphene oxide will have a considerable impact on the research of these materials and on their application. This will ensure important advances towards a more sustainableenergy mix of clean energy for current and future generations.
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 30/01/19