New Technique for Turning Sunshine and Water into Hydrogen Fuel
A research team led by DGIST Professor Jong-Sung Yu’s team at the Department of Energy Science and Engineering has successfully developed a new catalyst synthesis method that can efficiently decompose water into oxygen and hydrogen using solar light. It is expected that this method will facilitate hydrogen mass production due to higher efficiency than the existing photo catalyst method. Due to the intensifying environmental problems such as air pollution and global warming caused by the increased use of fossil energy, hydrogen is recently drawing attention as an ecofriendly energy source of the next generation.
Accordingly, research is being conducted globally on how to produce hydrogen using solar light and photo catalyst by decomposing water. To overcome the limitations of photo catalyst that only reacts to light in ultraviolet rays, researchers have doped dual atom such as Nitrogen (N), Sulfur (S), and Phosphorus (P) on photo catalyst or synthesized new photo catalysts, developing a photo catalyst that reacts efficiently to visible light.
With Professor Samuel Mao’s team at UC Berkeley in the US, Professor Yu’s research team developed a new H-doped photocatalyst by removing oxygen from the photocatalyst surface made of titanium dioxide and filling hydrogen into it through the decomposition of MgH2. Energy of long wavelength including visible light could not be used for the existing white titanium dioxide because it has a wide band gap energy. However, the development of MgH2 reduction could overcome this through oxygen flaw induction and H-doping while enabling the use of solar light with 570nm wavelength.