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Panasonic develops artificial photosynthesis system which converts carbon dioxide to organic materials


Panasonic has developed an artificial photosynthesis system which converts carbon dioxide (CO2) to organic materials by illuminating with sunlight at a world’s top efficiency of 0.2%. The efficiency is on a comparable level with real plants used for biomass energy. The key to the system is the application of a nitride semiconductor which makes the system simple and efficient. This development will be a foundation for the realization of a system for capturing and converting wasted carbon dioxide from incinerators, power plants or industrial activities.


CO2 is one of the substances responsible for greenhouse effect and as such, efforts are being made to reduce the emissions of CO2 worldwide. The problem of CO2 is also directly connected to an issue of the depletion of fossil fuels. Artificial photosynthesis is the direct conversion from CO2 into organic materials, which can solve both of these problems. On this development, Panasonic holds 18 domestic patents and 11 overseas patents, including pending applications. This development was partially presented at 19th International Conference on the Conversion and Storage of Solar Energy held on Pasadena, United States on July 30, 2012.

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