From Science Daily – Scientists have combined two molecules that occur naturally in blood to engineer a molecular complex that uses solar energy to split water into hydrogen and oxygen. Apparently, this new molecular complex can use solar energy to create hydrogen gas, and represents an alternative to the traditional way of creating hydrogen, which is electrolysis.
“Dr Stephen Curry, a structural biologist from Imperial College London’s Division of Cell and Molecular Biology who participated in the research explains: “This work has shown that it is possible to manipulate molecules and proteins that occur naturally in the human body by changing one small detail of their make-up, such as the type of metal at the heart of a porphyrin molecule, as we did in this study.
“It’s very exciting to prove that we can use these biological structures as a conduit to harness solar energy to separate water out into hydrogen and oxygen. In the long term, these synthetic molecules may provide a more environmentally friendly way of producing hydrogen, which can be used as a ‘green’ fuel.””
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