Turning CO2 into energy : French researchers have succeeded !




Recycle carbon dioxide into methane through a chemical reaction simple is a dream of a chemist that two researchers from Paris Diderot university have been realized. The results from the laboratory, paving the way to a using circular of CO2, and thus, to a solution of management of this greenhouse gas.
It may be the holy Grail of the ecological transition that has just been unveiled by two French researchers from the CNRS : Marc Robert and Julien Brisebois have developed a process capable of transforming the carbon dioxide (CO2), a greenhouse gas, today considered as waste, into methane (CH4), a source of concentrated energy, the main component of natural gas. And this method, published in the journal Nature, does not use catalysts that are expensive, based on metals that are rare or valuable, nor does it require large amounts of energy. It is simply to use a catalyst based on iron, metal, abundant and inexpensive, and leave it to do… the natural light.
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A “fuel”solar

 

Has the image of an artificial photosynthesis, the only contribution of solar energy makes it possible to initiate a process of chemical transformation. During the latter, the CO2 molecule progressively loses its two oxygen atoms which are replaced by hydrogen atoms. At the passage, energy is stored in the form of chemical bonds (four bonds (C-H against both bonds C=O at the origin). A reduction reaction which allows to obtain quantity of different compounds that range from carbon monoxide (CO) and formic acid (CH2O2), which are useful as raw materials in industry, methanol (CH3OH), and methane (CH4), the two fuels. The icing on the cake, the process of catalytic runs at ambient temperature and pressure.
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Thus, it does not eliminate the CO2 present in the atmosphere, since the use of fuels as source of energy will release exactly the same amount of carbon dioxide as that used to obtain them. But many consider a true carbon cycle sustainable, the image of which is made with wood energy, where the material fixed carbon during the growth period before the return during degradation. According to the laboratory of Electrochemistry of molecular, the combination of solar radiation and of the catalyst based on iron in order to transform the CO2 molecule with high-energy content “shows that it is possible to store renewable solar energy in the form of fuel compatible with the industrial infrastructure and energy networks“. Of what supplant the méthanation and all the systems of electricity storage by the battery ?

 

Composition of the atmosphere :
78 % nitrogen (N2)
21 % oxygen (O2)
0.9% argon (Ar)
0.04% of carbon dioxide (CO2)




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