energy crisis. Water crisis. Some areas of the world face both at the same time. Researchers may have found a way to overcome them. thanks to a “Artificial Leaf” Which produces both clean water and green hydrogen from the sun’s energy.

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Researchers have been working for many years to develop a variety of “Artificial Leaves”, Systems that would draw inspiration from photosynthesis to produce, for example, green hydrogen from water sources. With the floating system which she details in the pages nature water, a team from the University of Cambridge (United Kingdom) moves forward. Because its device is capable of producing both hydrogen and clean water directly from salty seawater or highly polluted water.

Hydrogen and water purified by the sun

To measure the strength you need to know that hydrogen is traditionally produced from pure water by electrolysis. Because even the slightest contaminant can, for example, damage the proper functioning of the system by causing undesirable chemical reactions. To tackle this problem, researchers at the University of Cambridge deposited a photocatalyst on a nanostructured carbon mesh. It is sufficient to optimize the absorption of light and heat to generate vapor which is used by the photocatalyst to release hydrogen. And also keep it away from water and its pollutants.

To enable the system to better utilize the sun’s energy, the researchers applied a white UV-absorbing layer to the floating device for hydrogen production. The remaining light from the solar spectrum is transmitted to the bottom of the device, which evaporates water which is then collected. one way, with them “Artificial Leaf”Mimicking real leaves a little more, minus the sweat.

Solution to both energy crisis and water crisis

The researchers note that their system is still in the proof-of-principle stage. But they hope that they will soon be able to implement it in many parts of the world that are facing both energy crisis and water crisis. An innovation that will be welcomed because, remember, around the world, approximately 2 billion people still do not have access to drinking water at home.

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