Tiny Device Can Turn Air Pollution Into Usable Fuel
A group of scientist have invented a device that can be considered a new solution to pollution, in every sense of the word. These scientists, who are from the University of Antwerp and University of Leuven (KU Leuven) in Belgium, have made this tiny device that is able to filter out polluted air, and at the same time produce a renewable fuel.
This device is a two-roomed photoelectrochemical cell. In the first chamber of the cell, air is being filtered and purified by making use of the photoanode. During this process, hydrogen is produced, which is then collected by a cathode that separates the two rooms of the device. This hydrogen can then be stored for later use as fuel.
“In the past, these cells were mostly used to extract hydrogen from water. We have now discovered that this is also possible, and even more efficient, with polluted air,” explained Professor Sammy Verbruggen, an author of the study.
Presently, this tiny device is nothing more than proof-of-concept design. This means that it’s a prototype that measures only a few centimetres and it can’t solve the problem of air pollution on its own. Nevertheless, the idea behind is existence is very promising.
Now, as we’ve said before, this tiny device is still in its testing phases and it’s a long way before it can become commercially viable. But regardless of this fact, this sort of innovation is the key to progress.
Conventional energy production and the pollution it generates are incredibly massive and serious health risk for people, a terrible thing for the environment, as well as a huge cost for the world’s economy. Moreover, climate change and global warming, the side effects of this fossil-fuel based energy show no signs of slowing down and is, in fact, accelerating.
The silver lining here is that some countries, some heavy polluters like China, Canada, and Germany as well as some average polluters like Costa Rica, are taking the matter seriously and are making huge strides to combat the situation. China for instance, which is the largest producer of greenhouse gases as a whole, but not by capita, is the leading manufacturer and deployer of solar panels. last year, they were able to, not only cover the increasing energy demand with renewable sources of energy but also go beyond that. All in all, it is tiny devices like this one here that can make things better for the future. The only thing that really stands in our way