Scientists have synthesized a new catalyst that can convert waste carbon dioxide into fuel and other energy-rich products, which is a big step toward industrialization.
Scientists from the University of Illinois at Chicago have developed a unique two-step catalytic process that uses molybdenum disulfide and an ionic liquid to "reduce," or transfer electrons, to carbon dioxide in a chemical reaction, which improves efficiency and lowers cost by replacing expensive metals like gold or silver in the reduction reaction.
Mohammad Asadi said that with this catalyst, they could directly reduce carbon dioxide to syngas without the need for a secondary, expensive gasification process.
Amin Salehi-Khojin, UIC professor of mechanical and industrial engineering, said that their whole purpose is to move from laboratory experiments to real-world applications, as this was a real breakthrough that could take a waste gas, carbon dioxide and use inexpensive catalysts to produce another source of energy at large-scale, while making a healthier environment.
The study was published in the journal Nature Communications.