CO2 reduction reaction (CO2RR) holds great promise for conversion of the green-house gas carbon dioxide into chemical fuels. The absence of catalytic materials demonstrating high performance and high selectivity currently hampers practical demonstration. CO2RR is also limited by the low solubility of CO2 in the electrolyte solution and therefore electrocatalytic reactions in gas phase using gas diffusion electrodes would be preferred. 2D materials have recently emerged as a novel class of electrocatalytic materials thanks to their rich structures and electronic properties. The synthesis of novel 2D catalysts and their implementation into photocatalytic systems would be a major step towards the development of devices for storing solar energy in the form of chemical fuels. With 2D-4-CO2, I propose to: 1) develop novel class of CO2RR catalysts based on conducting 2D nanosheets and 2) demonstrate photocatalytic conversion of CO2 into chemical fuels using structure engineered gas diffusion electrodes made of 2D conducting catalysts. To reach this goal, the first objective of 2D-4-CO2 is to provide guidelines for the development of novel cutting-edge 2D catalysts towards CO2 conversion into chemical fuel. This will be possible by using a multidisciplinary approach based on 2D materials engineering, advanced methods of characterization and novel designs of gas diffusion electrodes for the reduction of CO2 in gas phase. The second objective is to develop practical photocatalytic systems using van der Waals (vdW) heterostructures for the efficient conversion of CO2 into chemical fuels. vdW heterostructures will consist in rational designs of 2D materials and 2D-like materials deposited by atomic layer deposition in order to achieve highly efficient light conversion and prolonged stability. This project will not only enable a deeper understanding of the CO2RR but it will also provide practical strategies for large-scale application of CO2RR for solar fuel production.
Fields of science
Funding SchemeERC-STG - Starting Grant
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