The sun is a clean and inexhaustible source of energy, with the potential to provide a sustainable answer to all future energy supply demands. There’s just one outstanding problem: the sun doesn’t always shine and its energy is hard to store. For the first time, researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI and the ETH Zurich have unveiled a chemical process that uses the sun’s thermal energy to convert carbon dioxide and water directly into high-energy fuels: a procedure developed on the basis of a new material combination of cerium oxide and rhodium. This discovery marks a significant step towards the chemical storage of solar energy. The researchers published their findings in the research journal Energy and Environmental Science ._ Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) by Uta Deffke

Chemically Storing Solar Power

Scientists at TU Wien (Vienna) have now developed a new concept: By combining highly specialised new materials, they have managed to combine high temperature photovoltaics with an electrochemical cell. Ultraviolet light can be directly used to pump oxygen ions through a solid oxide electrolyte. The energy of the UV light is stored chemically. In the future, this method could also be used to split water into hydrogen and oxygen.__TU Wien

Will we ever stop using fossil fuels?

In recent years, proponents of clean energy have taken heart in the falling prices of solar and wind power, hoping they will drive an energy revolution. But a new study co-authored by an MIT professor suggests otherwise: Technology-driven cost reductions in fossil fuels will lead us to continue using all the oil, gas, and coal we can, unless governments pass new taxes on carbon emissions. __MIT News

Major Advance in Artificial Photosynthesis

– Συνδυάζοντας βιοσυμβατές φωτοευαίσθητες νανοσυρμάτινες συστοιχίες με επιλε-γμένους πληθυσμούς βακτηριδίων, το νέο σύστημα τεχνητής φωτοσύνθεσης καθίσταται διπλά επωφελές για το περιβάλλον: ηλιακά τροφοδοτούμενη »πράσινη» χημεία, με χρήση απομονωμένου διοξειδίου του άνθρακα.

– Berkeley Lab Researchers Perform Solar-powered Green Chemistry with Captured CO2