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CO_2, water, and sunlight to hydrocarbon fuels: a sustained sunlight to fuel (Joule-to-Joule) photoconversion efficiency of 1%

Sorcar, Saurav and Hwang, Yunju and Lee, Jaewoong and Kim, Hwapyong and Grimes, Keltin M. and Grimes, Craig A. and Jung, Jin-Woo and Cho, Chang-Hee and Majima, Tetsuro and Hoffmann, Michael R. and In, Su-Il (2019) CO_2, water, and sunlight to hydrocarbon fuels: a sustained sunlight to fuel (Joule-to-Joule) photoconversion efficiency of 1%. Energy and Environmental Science, 12 (9). pp. 2685-2696. ISSN 1754-5692. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20190521-104010002

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Abstract

If we wish to sustain our terrestrial ecosphere as we know it, then reducing the concentration of atmospheric CO_2 is of critical importance. An ideal pathway for achieving this would be the use of sunlight to recycle CO_2, in combination with water, into hydrocarbon fuels compatible with our current energy infrastructure. However, while the concept is intriguing such a technology has not been viable due to the vanishingly small CO_2-to-fuel photoconversion efficiencies achieved. Herein we report a photocatalyst, reduced blue-titania sensitized with bimetallic Cu–Pt nanoparticles that generates a substantial amount of both methane and ethane by CO_2 photoreduction under artificial sunlight (AM1.5): over a 6 h period 3.0 mmol g^(−1) methane and 0.15 mmol g^(−1) ethane are obtained (on an area normalized basis 0.244 mol m^(−2) methane and 0.012 mol m^(−2) ethane), while no H_2 nor CO is detected. This activity (6 h) translates into a sustained Joule (sunlight) to Joule (fuel) photoconversion efficiency of 1%, with an apparent quantum efficiency of φ = 86%. The time-dependent photoconversion efficiency over 0.5 h intervals yields a maximum value of 3.3% (φ = 92%). Isotopic tracer experiments confirm the hydrocarbon products originate from CO_2 and water.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
https://doi.org/10.1039/C9EE00734BDOIArticle
http://www.rsc.org/suppdata/c9/ee/c9ee00734b/c9ee00734b1.pdfPublisherSupplementary Information
ORCID:
AuthorORCID
Sorcar, Saurav0000-0001-9154-836X
Kim, Hwapyong0000-0002-9409-8218
Grimes, Keltin M.0000-0002-2325-2134
Cho, Chang-Hee0000-0003-0014-5464
Majima, Tetsuro0000-0003-1805-1677
Hoffmann, Michael R.0000-0001-6495-1946
In, Su-Il0000-0001-9063-2041
Alternate Title:CO2, water, and sunlight to hydrocarbon fuels: a sustained sunlight to fuel (Joule-to-Joule) photoconversion efficiency of 1%
Additional Information:© 2019 The Royal Society of Chemistry. The article was received on 05 Mar 2019, accepted on 09 May 2019 and first published on 21 May 2019. The authors gratefully acknowledge the support of the Ministry of Science and ICT (2017R1E1A1A01074890 & 2017M2A2A6A01070912). This research was also supported by the Technology Development Program to Solve Climate Changes of the National Research Foundation (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Science and ICT (2015M1A2A2074670). C. H. C. acknowledges the Basic Science Research Program (2016R1A2B4014448) through the National Research Foundation of Korea funded by the Ministry of Science and ICT of the Korean Government. Author contributions: S.-I. I. conceived and enabled the research, and contributed to writing the manuscript. S. S. contributed to material synthesis, analysis of experimental results, and writing the manuscript. Y. H. contributed to performing and interpreting the GC-MS results. H. K. assisted in hydrogen detection experiments. K. G. and J. L. also conducted experiments of sample synthesis. J. W. J. and C. H. C. performed the TRPL analysis. C. A. G. contributed to writing of the manuscript, and analyzed the experimental methods and results. T. M. and M. R. H. analyzed the experimental methods and results. The authors declare no competing interests.
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Ministry of Science and ICT (Korea)2017R1E1A1A01074890
Ministry of Science and ICT (Korea)2017M2A2A6A01070912
Ministry of Science and ICT (Korea)2015M1A2A2074670
National Research Foundation of Korea2016R1A2B4014448
Issue or Number:9
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190521-104010002
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20190521-104010002
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:95640
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:21 May 2019 17:52
Last Modified:09 Mar 2020 13:18

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