The Global Warming Potential (GWP) methane over 100 years is estimated to be 28-36 times larger than carbon dioxide (CO2). Though it is released in smaller quantities, methane traps nearly 90 times more heat than CO2. While recent research efforts have been focused on the capture and conversion of CO2, there is an increasing realization that mitigating the negative effects of greenhouse emissions cannot solely be done by capturing and converting CO2.
Methane (CH4) is an appealing molecule due to the presence of four hydrogen atoms, which could prove to be a good source for hydrogen (H2) production.
Though this process is as the primary commercial source of hydrogen today, it corresponds to gray hydrogen because it increases the release of CO2 in the atmosphere. Increasing the production of hydrogen with this approach, would thus require for technologies that would successfully capture and convert CO2. At low temperatures, methane is too stable to react using existing technologies, which constitutes a major roadblock. There is an urgent need for new technologies that will allow to capture and convert methane without the release of CO2, and with lower energy required for activation. Research in the Blair lab seeks to photocatalytically crack methane into carbon and hydrogen. Ultimately utilization of renewable sources of energy such as solar energy would enable green hydrogen production from a greenhouse gas.
Start Date: 1/10/2023 - End Date: 4/27/2023
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Interested in Working With the Following Programs
For EXCEL URE Students Only