Carbon nitrites for CO2 capture and conversion

Thursday, 03 December, 2015

Professor Ajayan Vinu will lead the Future Industries Institute, based at the University of South Australia, in a project that aims to remove carbon dioxide gases from the atmosphere and converting them into green energy.

Professor Vinu is globally recognised for his work in the emerging field of nanoporous materials. Of particular interest to the institute is his research into carbon nitrides, which have just the right properties to support the capture and conversion of CO2 molecules.

“Their interesting properties — a semiconducting framework structure and ordered pores — make them exciting candidates for the capture and conversion of CO2 molecules into methanol, which can then be used as a source of green energy with the help of sunlight and water,” Professor Vinu said.

“My goal is to develop this unique approach which has the potential to make a huge contribution to cleaning the environment and addressing one of our most significant environmental problems — the mitigation of atmospheric CO2.

“This fascinating material is not only helping in reducing CO2 levels by developing an efficient, low-cost photoelectrochemical semiconductor device, but also offers a clean fuel source from the conversion of absorbed CO2 molecules.”

UniSA Deputy Vice Chancellor Research and Innovation Professor Tanya Monro has welcomed Professor Vinu to the Future Industries Institute, saying his appointment will set the stage for some exciting developments.

“Professor Vinu is a fantastic complement to the institute, which is focused on research that will seed future industries and also provide solutions to emerging challenges,” she said.

“This appointment adds capacity to our strength in materials and energy engineering, with a clear pathway to partner engagement and impact.”


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