New Record-Breaking Solar Device Could Be Game-Changer for Powering Homes

Researchers at Monash University have designed a solar fuel generating device that has established a new record in energy efficiency for the production of solar fuels.


The new device can produce hydrogen fuel at 22 percent energy efficiency, breaking the previous record of 18 percent. 

Lead researcher Professor Leone Spiccia in the School of Chemistry at Monash explained that the process of splitting water generates hydrogen and oxygen by passing an electric current through water.  

“Electrochemical splitting of water could provide a cheap, clean and renewable source of hydrogen as the ultimately sustainable fuel. This latest breakthrough is significant in that it takes us one step further towards this becoming a reality,” Professor Spiccia said. 

Co-author, Professor Doug MacFarlane, ARC Laureate Fellow and leader of the Energy Program of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science at Monash, attributed the breakthrough to the advanced expertise of the research team in water splitting and how to tune the process to work most effectively with high-efficiency commercial solar cells. 

Professor MacFarlane explained how hydrogen is the ultimate in clean fuels since it contains no carbon and produces no carbon dioxide. 

“Hydrogen can be used to generate electricity directly in fuel cells. Cars driven by fuel cell electric engines are becoming available from a number of car manufacturers.  Hydrogen could even be used as an inexpensive energy storage technology at the household level to store energy from roof-top solar cells,” Professor MacFarlane said. 

The ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science is a group of more than 100 researchers across six locations in Australia, whose goal is to make sustainable energy sources cheaper and more accessible, to help society cope with the increasingly serious climate change and ocean acidification issues stemming from fossil fuel use. 

The research was published in the journal Energy and Environmental Science.

RELATED STORIES

Audi Has Made a Carbon-Neutral Diesel, But Is It a Game-Changer?

Amazing New Process Treats Wastewater, Captures Carbon and Makes Renewable Energy

7 Surprising Realities Behind the Transition to Renewable Energy

Is Hillary Clinton's Ambitious Solar Energy Goal for the U.S. Workable?

How Solar Power Can Be Affordable and Accessible for All

Grow Your Own Food Year-Round with DIY Solar Greenhouse

#story_page_ below_article

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.