A major goal in renewable energy research is to harvest the energy of the sun to convert water into hydrogen gas, a storable fuel. Now, with a nanoparticle-based system, researchers have set a record for part of the process, reporting 100% efficiency for the half-reaction that evolves hydrogen.
To make such water-splitting systems, researchers must find the right materials to absorb light and catalyze the splitting of water into hydrogen and oxygen. The two half-reactions in this process—the reduction of protons to hydrogen, and the oxidation of water to oxygen—must be isolated from each other so their products don’t react and explode. Find more information here.