A Florida State University researcher has discovered an artificial material that mimics photosynthesis and potentially creates a sustainable energy source. In The Journal of Physical Chemistry, Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering Jose L. Mendoza-Cortes details how this new material efficiently captures sunlight and then, how the energy can be used to break down water into oxygen (O2) and hydrogen (H2). This process is known as oxidation, and it is also what happens during photosynthesis when a plant uses light to break down water and carbohydrates, which are the main energy sources for the plant.
His discovery generates exciting new prospects for how this process could be used to forge new energy sources in a carbon neutral way. Potentially, hydrogen could be transported to other locations and burned as fuel.