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12 Sep

Floating ‘artificial leaves’ ride the wave of clean fuel production

Researchers have developed floating 'artificial leaves' that generate clean fuels from sunlight and water, and could eventually operate on a large scale at sea. The researchers, from the University of Cambridge, designed ultra-thin, flexible devices, which take their inspiration from photosynthesis -- the process by which plants convert sunlight into food. Since the low-cost, autonomous devices are light enough to float, they could be used to generate a sustainable alternative to petrol without taking up space on land. Outdoor tests of the lightweight leaves on the River Cam -- near iconic Cambridge sites including the Bridge of Sighs, the Wren Library and King's College Chapel -- showed that they can convert sunlight into fuels as efficiently as plant leaves. This is the first...
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