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In-situ Resources Production of Hydrogen and Hydrogen Peroxide from Water Using Nano-enabled Optical Fibers

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: 80NSSC23PB439
Agency Tracking Number: 231814
Amount: $156,404.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: T7
Solicitation Number: STTR_23_P1
Solicitation Year: 2023
Award Year: 2023
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2023-07-31
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2024-09-02
Small Business Information
12794 East Sahuaro Drive
Scottsdale, AZ 85259-4331
United States
DUNS: 080542781
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: Yes
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Paul Westerhoff
 (480) 965-2885
Business Contact
 Kelly Westerhoff
Phone: (480) 209-9140
Research Institution
 Arizona State University
551 East Tyler Mall, ERC 305
Tempe, AZ 85287-2480
United States

 Federally Funded R&D Center (FFRDC)

Photoelectrocatalytic processes (PECs) integrate the principles of photocatalysis (PC) and electrocatalysisnbsp;to improve the generation and stability of charge carriers, making them an effective way to produce H2 and H2O2. Reactor design is critical for optimal energy efficiency in activating advanced photocatalysts. Low energy efficiency in current PEC flat-plate reactor designs is due to light attenuation by glass materials and water, and limited surface area for photo-excitation. To overcome these challenges, we propose a new architecture called the optoelectrode that utilizes visible wavelength (gt;400 nm) light emitting diodes (LEDs) to launch light into one end of durable polymer optical fibers (POFs). The POFs side-emit light to activate non-platinum group element-based nanomaterials (NMs) embedded in porous polymers on the POF surface. Our reactor can house single or bundles of gt;100 POF optoelectrodes (~1.5 mm diameter amp; 10 to gt;50 cm lengths)nbsp;and we propose two architectures for producing resources from water.In previous work, we have demonstratednbsp;that:A cathodic optoelectrode produces H2 from water using two NMs embedded within porous layer of the POF surface, creating a PEC-POF system that generates H2 on the fiber surface.A photocatalytic optoelectrode withnbsp;a single NM (iron-based metal organic framework (MOF)) embedded within porous layer of the POF surface, producesnbsp;gt;1 wt% H2O2 from water.nbsp;Compared to flat glass-plate architectures with the same NM, POF optoelectrodes achieve gt;700% larger catalyst surface areanbsp;and gt;300% better incident photon-to-current efficiency (IPCE) with lower energy input. POF is also agnostic to nanomaterial type, enabling deposition of tunable nanomaterials for specific wavelengths using LED or polychromatic light. Bundling large numbers (ngt;100) of POF optoelectrodes enables higher packing geometries (i.e., m2 catalyst surface per m3 reactor volume) than flat-electrode PEC reactors, minimizing reactor size and power requirements.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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