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IIT Jodhpur researchers develop catalytic materials to produce high purity hydrogen


The researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology Jodhpur have developed Lanthanides based perovskite nanocomposite catalytic materials for artificial photosynthesis to produce high purity hydrogen. In the patented method, the researchers used natural sunlight to convert water into hydrogen and oxygen using a highly recyclable catalyst based on low-cost, simple transition metal. The team has now developed a series of catalysts which can efficiently produce hydrogen under ambient conditions. The end application of this research lies in the industries, automobile and energy sectors.
Hydrogen-based energy is the only viable source for a green and sustainable future. More than 90% source of the hydrogen are from petroleum feedstock, making it costly and out of reach of the common man. IIT Jodhpur’s research team is working to find a viable source of hydrogen generation. The technology developed by the IIT Jodhpur team does not need any external energy source except sunlight.
The research team has screened more than 100 catalyst combinations to develop five sets of catalysts that gave high hydrogen production under sunlight. The catalysts work for waste water, saline water and brackish water. The catalysts are recyclable and can be used multiple times. The number of Catalysts prepared and screened include 110.
The process used is simple, works on a wide spectrum of sunlight, and does not require any energy source to produce hydrogen. Low cost and high purity could be an essential step towards using hydrogen as a fuel directly in vehicles avoiding fossil fuels and reducing pollution.
This novel research is being funded collaboratively by the Department of Science and Technology and IIT Jodhpur. Further, the researchers aim to develop a prototype followed by a scale-up for large-scale hydrogen production for end-user applications.

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