Scientists Can Make Synthetic Gas Out of Thin Air, Says Study
The process normally required extremely high operating temperatures and the yield of methanol was limited. Read the study details here.
Science & Tech
As the world drifts further away from fossil fuels which have been humanity's main energy source for hundreds of years, converting CO2 into hydrocarbon fuels might be the ideal solution to deal with problems such as the energy crisis and the greenhouse effect.
While many methods have been explored to convert CO2 to organic fuels, there were some limitations. Now, a research by Chinese scientists has one potential solution.
In a process in which the researchers call "efficient, cost-effective, and environmental-friendly," the team used nanoplates that generate power from temperature changes to create synthetic methanol.
If viable, this could provide a clean way of removing CO2 from the atmosphere while generating synthetic fuels.
The paper has been published in Nature Communications.
A new route discovered
Methanol can be converted into gasoline by hydrogenating CO2 out of the air, however, as researchers state, the process requires extremely high operating temperatures -- such as 400-500°F (200–250 °C) -- and high pressures (5–10 MPa), limiting the yield of methanol.