Photocatalytic CO2 Reduction
There can be little doubt that CO2 currently has the highest public profile of any molecule
- Annual anthropogenic CO2 emissions – 24 billion metric ton
− Global chemical industry use - 115 metric tons
− CO2 capture and sequestration is necessary
- Potentially, however, there are better ways to deal with CO2.
Artificial Photosynthesis - an extremely attractive scenario would be to efficiently produce large quantities of methanol or hydrocarbon fuels directly from captured CO2
The best known catalysts are TiO2 based but suffer from limited absorption of solar spectrum (UV only), lack of selectivity, and low efficiency. We are employing catalyst by design approach to find a catalyst that can absorb visible light and reduce CO2 selectively and efficiently. We have recently shown that GaN-ZnO2 catalyst which absorbs visible light can selectively reduce CO2 to CO. This catalyst is not very efficient and we are examining a variety of catalyst by density functional theoretical studies to select the ones that can potentially reduce CO2 more efficiently.
The financial assistance for this research was provided under a laboratory directed research program and is gratefully acknowledged.
The principal technical contact for this project is Dr. Chaitanya K. Narula, tel. (865) 574-8445, e-mail email@example.com.