Researchers at SFedU developed novel nanoscale catalysts that can split water in the presence of sunshine to produce “green hydrogen.”
These possibilities have arisen as a result of special hollow core and shell spherical nanoparticle catalysts that efficiently collect incident sunlight and slow the rate of recombination of photogenerated charge carriers.
Humanity has long relied on conventional energy sources like coal, gas, and oil, which are gradually running out. Also, our earth is being severely polluted, a lot of carbon dioxide is being released, the environment is being poisoned, and it is carbonising. In this sense, the scientific community is growing more and more interested in the hunt for new renewable alternative energy sources.
The shift of Russia’s energy sector to a carbon-neutral state has made hydrogen energy its most crucial component. It is due to the formation of environmentally benign and completely safe water during the oxidation of hydrogen, which produces energy. It is possible to extract hydrogen from it once more, and so on indefinitely. Even electrocatalysts for low-temperature fuel cells, which can be utilised to construct future “clean” cars without exhaust fumes, are made using hydrogen energy.
Unquestionably, Southern Federal University researchers have contributed to the advancement of renewable energy. However, in a recent study, a group of researchers from the Southern Federal University’s International Research Center of Intelligent Materials recommended employing waterproof metal-organic frame structures, or MOFs, as nanocatalysts for photo-electro-catalytic hydrogen generation. Although highly sought after, creating photo-electro-nanocatalysts based on novel materials is still a very challenging undertaking.
First, the scientists created a perfect, spherical MOF nanoparticle that included titanium. The nanoparticles’ surfaces were then improved, and a method for creating a structured core-shell particle was created. Experts claim that because the inner and outer layers of a spherical Ti-MOF are structured differently, partial disintegration of the material results in the production of a hollow core-shell structure.
The team’s development of a wide range of nanoporous organometallic structures opens up numerous opportunities for developing new classes of nanocatalysts utilising the suggested strategy for enhancing their functionally crucial properties.
The research on the development of spherical nanoporous photo-electro-catalysts with a “core-shell” structure received high praise from the scientific community and was published in the highly regarded journal “Small” with an impact factor of 15.153.
Aslam Hossain, a postdoctoral researcher from India and one of the authors of the scientific article, notes that the conditions established at SFedU will soon allow the development of a new method for accelerated optimisation of the parameters of synthesised nanoporous photocatalysts for particular practical applications required in the “green” energy of the future.
The work was done as a part of the Strategic Academic Leadership Program “Priority 2030” implementation of the SFedU strategic project “Full cycle technologies for the express development of functional materials for a low-carbon economy under the management of artificial intelligence” (national project “Science and Universities”).