Breakthroughs represent ‘major leap’ towards making energy out of thin air


New devices could each represent a major breakthrough in making clean energy out of thin air, according to their creators.

They mimic natural processes to gather hydrogen, which is currently made using methane and uses vast amounts of fossil energy.

One is the invention of a new kind of solar panel, 10 times more efficient than previous devices of its kind, that can mimic natural photosynthesis. It turns water into hydrogen and oxygen and is able to dramatically reduce the cost of doing so.

The other is a simple system that is able to take water from the air and produce hydrogen gas. It too was inspired by natural processes: it works like an artificial leaf, its creators say, storing the energy gathered from sunlight.