The silver bullet in hydrogen production may actually be made out of titanium dioxide. At least this is what Associate Professor Darren Sun at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) is saying.
Under the category of the “Best Thing Since Sliced Bread and Ginsu Knives” Professor Sun has invented the Multi-use Titanium Dioxide (TiO2). When combined with nanofiber materials TiO2 can split water, create hydrogen, purify and desalinate water, recover energy from wastewater, generate electricity, double the life of a lithium ion battery and even be made into antibacterial bandages.
Titanium dioxide is abundant and cheap so no precious metals need to be used for all of the previously mentioned applications. It took the Professor five years to develop this material and over 70 scientific papers have been written about his invention.
According to NTU.edu, “This discovery, which was published recently in the academic journal, Water Research, showed that a small amount of nanomaterial (0.5 grams of titanium dioxide nanofibres treated with copper oxide), can generate 1.53 millilitre of hydrogen in an hour when immersed in one litre of wastewater. This amount of hydrogen produced is three times more than when Platinum is used in the same situation. Depending on the type of wastewater, the amount of hydrogen generated can be as much as 200 millilitres in an hour. Also to increase hydrogen production, more nanomaterial can be used in larger amounts of wastewater.”
Professor Sun is part of a team of 20 researchers who believe so much in the Multi-use Titanium Dioxide material that they are spinning off a startup company in order to commercialize the material. They are now looking for business partners to help speed up the commercialization process. Perhaps a visit to the TV show “Shark Tank” will now be in order.