A new renewable energy device has been developed by scientists at the University of Cambridge, UK. The innovation is inspired by natural processes and appeals to the biomimicry design approaches. More specifically, the scientists looked at how plants create their own energy.
The ground-breaking renewable energy device is made out of photocatalysts—that is, materials that absorb light to create a reaction. The slim sheet is capable of absorbing water, carbon dioxide, and sunlight in order to produce oxygen and formic acid—the latter of which can be "stored and used as fuel on its own, or turned into hydrogen fuel." The sheet is based in cobalt and when submerged in a bath of water and carbon dioxide, the chemical reaction occurs. It requires no wires or electricity in order to operate.
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