Archive for the ‘Hot Article’ Category

Harvesting hydrogen from tough biomass

US-based scientists have come up with a sustainable way to harvest hydrogen fuel from biomass. Their new electrolytic approach can even release hydrogen from obstinate molecules like lignin and cellulose.

Although hydrogen is the most abundant element in the universe, it’s so light that Earth’s gravity cannot hold onto it. This is unfortunate, as molecular hydrogen also happens to be the cleanest fuel – burning in air to give just water and energy. Because only trace amounts exist in the atmosphere, most hydrogen fuel today is derived from fossil fuels, using processes called petroleum reforming and coal gasification. It can also be thermochemically extracted from biomass, using high temperatures and expensive catalysts. Other ways to harvest hydrogen from biomass are fermentation, electrolysis and photoelectrochemical conversion, but these methods cannot directly break down the fibrous lignin and cellulose found in wood and grass.

Now, Yulin Deng and his team at Georgia Tech have developed a low-temperature electrolytic technology that can harvest hydrogen fuel from nearly all types of biomass.

Read the full Chemistry World article and original article published in EES:

Wei Liu, Yong Cui, Xu Du, Zhe Zhang, Zisheng Chao and Yulin Deng
Energy Environ. Sci., 2016, Advance Article. DOI: 10.1039/C5EE03019F

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Salting out artificial photosynthesis

Chemical engineers from the US have put forward a concept for a new type of artificial photosynthetic system to convert carbon dioxide into almost pure liquid ethanol fuel. It uses a saturated salt electrolyte, and, according to their calculations, the system would be capable of generating 15.27 million gallons of ethanol per year per square kilometre.

You can read the article written by William Bergius which was published recently by Chemistry World.

Read the original full article based on M R Singh and A T Bell, Energy Environ. Sci., 2016, DOI: 10.1039/c5ee02783g here.

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HOT Articles in EES

The following HOT articles have been highlighted by the reviewers of the articles as being particularly interesting or significant pieces of research. These are all free to access until 30/9/2015. The order they appear in the list has no meaning or ranking.


Sodium intercalation chemistry in graphite
Haegyeom Kim, Jihyun Hong, Gabin Yoon, Hyunchul Kim, Kyu-Young Park, Min-Sik Park, Won-Sub Yoon and Kisuk Kang
Journal Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE02051D, Paper

C5EE02051D GA


Broadband and ultrahigh optical haze thin films with self-aggregated alumina nanowire bundles for photovoltaic applications
Gumin Kang, Kyuyoung Bae, Minwoo Nam, Doo-Hyun Ko, Kyoungsik Kim and Willie J. Padilla
Journal Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE01757B, Communication

C5EE01757B GA


Functional integration of Ni–Mo electrocatalysts with Si microwire array photocathodes to simultaneously achieve high fill factors and light-limited photocurrent densities for solar-driven hydrogen evolution
Matthew R. Shaner, James R. McKone, Harry B. Gray and Nathan S. Lewis
Journal Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE01076D, Paper

C5EE01076D GA


Reducing the charging voltage of a Li–O2 battery to 1.9 V by incorporating a photocatalyst
Yang Liu, Na Li, Shichao Wu, Kaiming Liao, Kai Zhu, Jin Yi and Haoshen Zhou
Journal Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE01958C, Communication

C5EE01958C GA


Biomass oxidation to formic acid in aqueous media using polyoxometalate catalysts – boosting FA selectivity by in-situ extraction
Jenny Reichert, Birgit Brunner, Andreas Jess, Peter Wasserscheid and Jakob Albert
Journal Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE01706H, Paper

C5EE01706H GA


Balancing the bioeconomy: supporting biofuels and bio-based materials in public policy
Jim Philp
Journal Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE01864A, Opinion

C5EE01864A GA


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Battery Buffer: Layered oxide that shrinks when ions intercalated

Battery electrodes are typically made from layered oxide materials. However, these layered oxides often undergo a positive ‘strain effect’ or expansion when ions are incorporated into their structure. This can leads to inferior long-term cycling stability and reduced battery safety. However, scientists at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, have synthesised a negative strain layered oxide, Na0.5NbO2, which exhibits high stability, a long cycling life and an impressive rate performance. This material shrinks on intercalation of sodium ions which is thought to be a result of enhanced interlayer Na–O interactions and weakened Nb–Nb and Nb–O bonding. The researchers have also found that the material is suitable as an independent electrode material and as a buffer in composite electrodes, yet the high cost of niobium and the difficulty of synthesis may limit its future application. The lattice shrinks upon intercalation of sodium ions

Want to know more?

Read the full article in Chemistry World by Laura Fisher.

Or, take a look at the original article which is free to access until 9th September 2015:

Anti-P2 structured Na0.5NbO2 and its negative strain effect” by X. Wang et al.DOI:10.1039/C5EE01745A

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HOT Articles in EES

The following HOT articles have been highlighted by the reviewers of the articles as being particularly interesting or significant pieces of research. These are all free to access until 18/06/2015. The order they appear in the list has no meaning or ranking.


A thermodynamic tank model for studying the effect of higher hydrocarbons on natural gas storage in metal–organic frameworks
Hongda Zhang, Pravas Deria, Omar K. Farha, Joseph T. Hupp and Randall Q. Snurr
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00808E, Paper

C5EE00808E GA


Hydrogen or batteries for grid storage? A net energy analysis
Matthew A. Pellow, Christopher J. M. Emmott, Charles J. Barnhart and Sally M. Benson
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE04041D, Analysis

C4EE04041D GA


A quantitative analysis of the efficiency of solar-driven water-splitting device designs based on tandem photoabsorbers patterned with islands of metallic electrocatalyst
Yikai Chen, Ke Sun, Heather Audesirk, Chengxiang Xiang and Nathan S. Lewis
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00311C, Paper

C5EE00311C GA


Metal–organic frameworks and their derived nanostructures for electrochemical energy storage and conversion
Wei Xia, Asif Mahmood, Ruqiang Zou and Qiang Xu
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00762C, Review Article

C5EE00762C GA


You can’t have an energy revolution without transforming advances in materials, chemistry and catalysis into policy change and action
Geoffrey A. Ozin
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00907C, Perspective

C5EE00907C GA


A simple spiro-type hole transporting material for efficient perovskite solar cells
Paramaguru Ganesan, Kunwu Fu, Peng Gao, Ines Raabe, Kurt Schenk, Rosario Scopelliti, Jingshan Luo, Lydia H. Wong, Michael Grätzel and Mohammad Khaja Nazeeruddin
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03773A, Communication

C4EE03773A GA

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Ultrasound test echos with battery charge

Measuring the charge within a battery can often involve the use of expensive equipment such as synchrotron light sources, which are not accessible to all researchers. However, scientists at Princeton University lead by Dr Daniel Steingart have developed a method of using ultrasound echoes to measure charge within a battery at different times, giving physical insight into a battery’s state. This ultrasomic imaging of what is happening inside a cell could prove to be useful commercially.

Want to know more?

Read the full article in Chemistry World by Osman Mohamed.

Or, take a look at the original article which is free to access untill 2nd June 2015:

Electrochemical-acoustic time of flight: in operando correlation of physical dynamics with battery charge and health by A. G. Hsieh, S. Bhadra, B. J. Hertzberg,  P. J. Gjeltema, A. Goy,  J. W. Fleischer and  D. A. Steingart, DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00111K.

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HOT Articles in EES

The following HOT articles have been highlighted by the reviewers of the articles as being particularly interesting or significant pieces of research. These are all free to access until 15/05/2015. The order they appear in the list has no meaning or ranking.

Positive onset potential and stability of Cu2O-based photocathodes in water splitting by atomic layer deposition of a Ga2O3 buffer layer
Changli Li, Takashi Hisatomi, Osamu Watanabe, Mamiko Nakabayashi, Naoya Shibata, Kazunari Domen and Jean-Jacques Delaunay
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00250H, Paper

C5EE00250H GA

Toward the rational design of non-precious transition metal oxides for oxygen electrocatalysis
Wesley T. Hong, Marcel Risch, Kelsey A. Stoerzinger, Alexis Grimaud, Jin Suntivich and Yang Shao-Horn
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03869J, Review Article

C4EE03869J GA

Tracking the structural arrangement of ions in carbon supercapacitor nanopores using in situ small-angle X-ray scattering
C. Prehal, D. Weingarth, E. Perre, R. T. Lechner, H. Amenitsch, O. Paris and V. Presser
Journal Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00488H, Paper

C5EE00488H GA

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HOT Articles in EES

The following HOT articles have been highlighted by the reviewers of the articles as being particularly interesting or significant pieces of research. These are all free to access until 31/03/2015. The order they appear in the list has no meaning or ranking.

CO2-free electric power circulation via direct charge and discharge using the glycolic acid/oxalic acid redox couple

R. Watanabe, M.Yamauchi, M.Sadakiyo, R. Abe and T. Takeguchi
DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00192G

10.1039/C5EE00192G


Atomic scale enhancement of metal–support interactions between Pt and ZrC for highly stable electrocatalysts
Niancai Cheng,  Mohammad Norouzi Banis, Jian Liu, Adam Riese, Shichun Mu, Ruying Li, Tsun-Kong Sham and Xueliang Sun

DOI: 10.1039/C4EE04086D

10.1039/C4EE04086D


Novel scalable synthesis of highly conducting and robust PEDOT paper for a high performance flexible solid supercapacitor
Bihag Anothumakkool, Roby Soni, Siddheshwar, N. Bhangea and Sreekumar Kurungot

DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00142K

 DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00142K


Olivine LiFePO4: the remaining challenges for future energy storage
Jiajun Wang and  Xueliang Sun

DOI: 10.1039/C4EE04016C

10.1039/C4EE04016C


Anomalously large interface charge in polarity-switchable photovoltaic devices: an indication of mobile ions in organic–inorganic halide perovskites
Yong Zhao, Chunjun Liang, Huimin Zhang, Dan Li, Ding Tian, Guobao Li, Xiping Jing, Wenguan Zhang, Weikang Xiao, Qian Liu,  Fujun Zhang and  Zhiqun He

DOI: 10.1039/C4EE04064C

10.1039/C4EE04064C


SnO2 nanocrystal-decorated mesoporous ZSM-5 as a precious metal-free electrode catalyst for methanol oxidation
Xiangzhi Cui,Yan Zhu, Zile Hua, Jingwei Feng,  Ziwei Liu, Lisong Chena and Jianlin Shi

DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00240K

10.1039/C5EE00240K


Hierarchical zigzag Na1.25V3O8 nanowires with topotactically encoded superior performance for sodium-ion battery cathodes
Yifan Dong, Shuo Li, Kangning Zhao, Chunhua Han, Wei Chen,  Bingliang Wang, Lei Wang, Boan Xu, Qiulong Wei, Lei Zhang, Xu Xua and Liqiang Mai

DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00036J

10.1039/C5EE00036J


CO2-free electric power circulation via direct charge and discharge using the glycolic acid/oxalic acid redox couple
R. Watanabe, M. Yamauchi, M. Sadakiyo, R. Abe and T. Takeguchi

DOI: 10.1039/C5EE00192G

10.1039/C5EE00192G


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Nanoporous methane storage – an impossible target?

Emma Stephen writes about an EES article in Chemistry World.


Is it possible to design a material to fulfil current methane storage goals? This is the question that a multi-disciplinary research team set out to answer by rapidly screening hundreds of thousands of possible methane storage materials in a computational study. Methane could reduce global dependence on oil so the search is on for nanoporous materials to act as fuel tanks for this tricky-to-store gas; but things are not looking promising.

C4EE03515A GA
Interested to find out more? Read the full article by Emma Stephen in Chemistry World.

Read the original article in Energy and Environmental Science:

The materials genome in action: identifying the performance limits for methane storage
Cory M. Simon, Jihan Kim, Diego A. Gomez-Gualdron, Jeffrey S. Camp, Yongchul G. Chung, Richard L. Martin, Rocio Mercado, Michael W. Deem, Dan Gunter, Maciej Haranczyk, David S. Sholl, Randall Q. Snurr and Berend Smit
Energy Environ. Sci., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03515A, Perspective

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HOT Articles in EES

The following HOT articles have been highlighted by the reviewers of the articles as being particularly interesting or significant pieces of research. These are all free to access until 28th February 2015. The order they appear in the list has no meaning or ranking.


Microbial electrochemistry and technology: terminology and classification
Uwe Schröder, Falk Harnisch and Largus T. Angenent  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03359K, Perspective


A silole copolymer containing a ladder-type heptacylic arene and naphthobisoxadiazole moieties for highly efficient polymer solar cells
Zhiyun Zhang, Francis Lin, Hsieh-Chih Chen, Hung-Chin Wu, Chin-Lung Chung, Chien Lu, Shih-Hung Liu, Shih-Huang Tung, Wen-Chang Chen, Ken-Tsung Wong and Pi-Tai Chou  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03642E, Communication

C4EE03642E GA


Material descriptors for predicting thermoelectric performance
Jun Yan, Prashun Gorai, Brenden Ortiz, Sam Miller, Scott A. Barnett, Thomas Mason, Vladan Stevanović and Eric S. Toberer  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03157A, Paper


Understanding the rate-dependent J–V hysteresis, slow time component, and aging in CH3NH3PbI3 perovskite solar cells: the role of a compensated electric field
W. Tress, N. Marinova, T. Moehl, S. M. Zakeeruddin, Mohammad Khaja Nazeeruddin and M. Grätzel  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03664F, Paper


Polyoxometalate-functionalized nanocarbon materials for energy conversion, energy storage and sensor systems
Yuanchun Ji, Lujiang Huang, Jun Hu, Carsten Streb and Yu-Fei Song  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03749A, Review Article

C4EE03749A GA


Power-to-What? – Environmental assessment of energy storage systems
André Sternberg and André Bardow  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03051F, Analysis


Flexible graphene devices related to energy conversion and storage
Xiluan Wang and Gaoquan Shi  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03685A, Review Article


Light management in thin film silicon solar cells
F.-J. Haug and C. Ballif  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03346A, Review Article


1,2,4-Triazolium perfluorobutanesulfonate as an archetypal pure protic organic ionic plastic crystal electrolyte for all-solid-state fuel cells
Jiangshui Luo, Annemette H. Jensen, Neil R. Brooks, Jeroen Sniekers, Martin Knipper, David Aili, Qingfeng Li, Bram Vanroy, Michael Wübbenhorst, Feng Yan, Luc Van Meervelt, Zhigang Shao, Jianhua Fang, Zheng-Hong Luo, Dirk E. De Vos, Koen Binnemans and Jan Fransaer  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE02280G, Paper


The materials genome in action: identifying the performance limits for methane storage
Cory M. Simon, Jihan Kim, Diego A. Gomez-Gualdron, Jeffrey S. Camp, Yongchul G. Chung, Richard L. Martin, Rocio Mercado, Michael W. Deem, Dan Gunter, Maciej Haranczyk, David S. Sholl, Randall Q. Snurr and Berend Smit  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03515A, Perspective


Bioelectrodes modified with chitosan for long-term energy supply from the body
S. El Ichi, A. Zebda, J.-P. Alcaraz, A. Laaroussi, F. Boucher, J. Boutonnat, N. Reverdy-Bruas, D. Chaussy, M. N. Belgacem, P. Cinquin and D. K. Martin  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03430A, Paper


β-cyclodextrin enhanced triboelectrification for self-powered phenol detection and electrochemical degradation
Zhaoling Li, Jun Chen, Jin Yang, Yuanjie Su, Xing Fan, Ying Wu, Chongwen Yu and Zhong Lin Wang  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03596H, Communication

Cooperative kinetics of depolarization in CH3NH3PbI3 perovskite solar cells
Luca Bertoluzzi, Rafael S. Sanchez, Linfeng Liu, Jin-Wook Lee, Elena Mas-Marza, Hongwei Han, Nam-Gyu Park, Ivan Mora-Sero and Juan Bisquert  
DOI: 10.1039/C4EE03171G, Communication
C4EE03171G GA

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