Going Solar with Gold

University of Californa - Berkeley Creates Solar Fuel from Gold + Bacteria

Source:  University of California - Berkeley

The Midas Touch
University of California Berkeley researchers have just demonstrated a novel and efficient means of creating biofuels.  They've placed gold nanoclusters that absorb light into a bacterium.  A biohybrid results that produces a high yield of chemical products like biofuels.  It's a new source of sustainable energy.

High Value Biohybrid
The biohybrid captures sunlight and carbon dioxide to make chemicals useful both on earth and in space.  It's a breakthrough discovery and has just been published in the journal Nature Nanotechnology.

Artificial Photosynthesis Producing Solar Fuels
The bacterium is photosensitive and is named Moorella thermoacetica.  It has an appetite for gold.  The researchers feed it a nanocluster of 22 gold atoms.  The gold slips through the cell wall.  With great efficiency, it produces solar fuels through artificial photosynthesis.  It's a first.  The researchers are now moving on to focus on cutting the costs of the process and improving its "quantum efficiency."


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