High intensity enzymatic biocatalysis for direct conversion of solar energy into chemicals and fuels

Xin Lu, Xueyan Zhao, Ping Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Conversion of solar energy into chemical fuels is one of the key focal points in today's endeavors pursuing renewable energies, and control of CO2 emission is critical to environment's sustainable wellbeing. Toward that, one promising approach is to integrate solar energy harvesting with with production of fuels from CO2. Although nature has been performing CO2 fixation consistently over the evolution histry of life on earth, photosynthesis by living biological systems, limited by its slow speed and living conditions, is not suited for CO2 capture and utilization at concentrated emmission source points. Alternatively, isolated enzymes, which can be operated in artificial reactors for enhanced reaction efficacy, have also been shown capable of catalyzing the reduction of CO2 at ambient conditions. However, the reported reaction rates and equilibrium concentrations still fall distant from any practical applications for large scale CO2 sequestration. One question natrually arises is that, how is the possibility of overcoming the limitations of nature and biological systems to capitalizing on efficient CO2 sequestration and utilization. This presentation overviews the challenges and opportunities in developing biomolecule and nanomaterials-based technologies toward a sustainable carbon economy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalACS National Meeting Book of Abstracts
StatePublished - Dec 1 2010

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