Saturday, December 17, 2011

On the promise of the artificial leaf

MIT's Dan Nocera is one of the forerunners involved in the development of an 'artificial leaf', a device that would mimic photosynthesis and store solar energy in the form of high-energy chemical bonds, a sort of generalization of solar cells, and photosynthesis itself.

Here's the MIT news article. This particular device uses solar energy to split water and store hydrogen. I recently attended a talk by Prof. James Barber of the Imperial College, London where he described his own work on understanding photosynthesis and described Dan Nocera's work as well. The photosynthetic machinery relies on a fantastically engineered molecular design which we would need to replicate using some heavy studies into single-molecular electron transfer in inorganic compounds. Time to hit the inorganic chemistry books, I say.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

MoS2 chips rival Silicon

Here is an article on making mirco-chips faster, cheaper and more readily available in terms of resources.