Office of Research, UC Riverside
Phillip Christopher
Associate Adjunct Professor
Chemical/Environ. Engineering
pchrist@ucr.edu
(951) 999-9999


SusChEM:Mechanistic examination and design of multifunctional heterogeneous photocatalysts for artificial photosynthesis

AWARD NUMBER
006156-005
FUND NUMBER
21159
STATUS
Closed
AWARD TYPE
3-Grant
AWARD EXECUTION DATE
9/4/2013
BEGIN DATE
7/1/2013
END DATE
6/30/2016
AWARD AMOUNT
$10,000

Sponsor Information

SPONSOR AWARD NUMBER
CHE-1301019
SPONSOR
NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION
SPONSOR TYPE
Federal
FUNCTION
Organized Research
PROGRAM NAME

Proposal Information

PROPOSAL NUMBER
13020161
PROPOSAL TYPE
New
ACTIVITY TYPE
Basic Research

PI Information

PI
Christopher, Phillip
PI TITLE
Other
PI DEPTARTMENT
Chemical/Environ. Engineering
PI COLLEGE/SCHOOL
Bourns College of Engineering
CO PIs

Project Information

ABSTRACT

The Chemical Catalysis Program (CAT) of the NSF Division of Chemistry supports Professor Phillip Christopher of the University of California, Riverside in efforts to elucidate the elementary mechanisms that control performance for the solar driven artificial photosynthesis (AP) reaction, CO2 + H2O conversion to fuels. Specifically, the kinetics associated with H2O splitting, CO2 methanation and H2O formation will be studied on metal loaded semiconductors (Rh, Ru and Ni deposited on TiO2 and GaN:ZnO) as a function of catalyst characteristics and process variables. Catalytically active sites will be engineered to optimize AP performance and nano-scale mass transfer control will be utilized to manipulate concentrations of reaction intermediate at active sites. The effect of adding a thermal stimulus to the reacting system will be explored, which is hypothesized to significantly enhance reaction rates. The overall objective is to identify materials and conditions that maximize the rates of H2O splitting and CO2 methanation while minimizing H2O formation to facilitate the overall AP process through a unique reaction pathway that exploits thermo- and photo-catalytic steps.

Global reliance on unsustainable fossil resources for energy and chemical industries has resulted in the release of massive quantities of CO2 and H2O into the atmosphere. The development of strategies that harness solar energy for direct CO2 and H2O conversion to fuels and chemicals (artificial photosynthesis, AP) are the most appealing solutions for environmental and energy sustainability. Professor Christopher and coworkers will combine fundamental insights into the reaction mechanism with nano-scale reaction engineering to design more efficient AP catalysts. Students from UC Riverside, Riverside community college and local middle schools will significantly benefit from hands on education in this multidisciplinary research effort.
(Abstract from NSF)