As a measure against global warming, reducing the emission of carbon dioxide, which is a greenhouse gas, is an urgent issue, but on the other hand, artificial photosynthesis technology that effectively uses carbon dioxide to convert it into energy is drawing attention.Artificial photosynthesis is a technology that uses solar energy to artificially produce useful fuel from carbon dioxide, similar to photosynthesis in which plants use solar energy to obtain carbohydrates from carbon dioxide and water.If artificial photosynthesis technology is put into practical use, not only will it be possible to make effective use of carbon dioxide, but it will also be possible to generate fuel using solar energy, which is a renewable energy source.

On the 8th of Osaka City University, a group of Professor Yutaka Amao, director of the Artificial Photosynthesis Research Center, Advanced Research Organization of the same university, collaborated with Mazda Co., Ltd. Technical Research Institute on artificial photosynthesis for automobiles. Announced that it has succeeded in producing ethanol, which is expected as a low-carbon fuel.Although artificial photosynthesis that converts carbon dioxide into methanol has been reported so far, it is the first time that the conversion to ethanol, which is expected to be more practical as a fuel, has been successful.

 The research group devised a reaction system that produces acetic acid from carbon dioxide and methane (or methanol) and synthesizes ethanol from acetic acid by artificial photosynthesis. It is reported that it succeeded in converting about 150% of acetic acid to ethanol by irradiating with sunlight for 5 minutes.
 The research group plans to develop a new artificial photosynthesis technology that can generate ethanol from sunlight and carbon dioxide using acetic acid bacteria and the like.
 This achievement was published in "Applied Catalysis B: Environmental" on July 7nd.

Source:[Osaka City University] Succeeded in producing ethanol fuel using solar energy

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