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Researchers develop novel 2-step CO2 conversion technology

A team of researchers has discovered a novel two-step process to increase the efficiency of carbon dioxide (CO2) electrolysis, a chemical reaction driven by electrical currents that can aid in the production of valuable chemicals and fuels. The research team obtained their results by constructing a specialized three-chambered device called an electrolyser, which uses electricity to reduce CO2 into smaller molecules. Compared to fossil fuels, electricity is a much more affordable and environmentally-friendly method for driving chemical processes to produce commercial chemicals and fuels. These can include ethylene, which is used in the production of plastics, and ethanol, a valuable fuel additive. Whereas direct CO2 electrolysis is the standard method for reducing carbon dioxide, Jiao's team broke the electrolysis process into two steps, reducing CO2 into carbon monoxide (CO) and then reducing the CO further into multi-carbon products. This two-part approach, said one researcher, presents multiple advantages over the standard method.

Visit Website | Image credit: Feng Jiao