Lithium-sulfur batteries have great potential as a low-cost, high-energy, energy source for both vehicle and grid applications. However, they suffer from significant capacity fading. Now, scientists have found that carrageenan, a seaweed derivative, acts as a stabilizer, allowing for more cycling and an extended lifetime. ... Read more »
X-ray experiments, coupled with theoretical work, revealed how oxygen atoms embedded near the surface of a copper sample had a more dramatic effect on the early stages of a reaction with CO2 than accounted for in earlier theories. This work could prove useful in designing new catalysts for converting CO2 into liquid fuels and other products. ... Read more »
Ambient-pressure studies of the interface between a platinum electrode and an alkaline electrolyte revealed the molecular-level chemistry, structure, and dynamics of the platinum surface as a function of applied potential, highlighting differences between thermodynamic predictions and the actual surface composition. ... Read more »
Scientists have sequenced the genome of a green alga that has drawn commercial interest as a strong producer of quality lipids for biofuel production. The chromosome-assembly genome of Chromochloris zofingiensis provides a blueprint for new discoveries in sustainable biofuels, antioxidants, and other valuable bioproducts. ... Read more »
A new study confirms that structural defects and jagged surfaces at the edges of platinum and gold nanoparticles are key hot spots for chemical reactivity. The experiments should help researchers customize the structural properties of catalysts to make them more effective in fostering chemical reactions.
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Electrochemical (battery) cells with aqueous electrolytes can be safe, inexpensive, and environmentally friendly, but they are limited by a narrow voltage window. X-ray absorption spectroscopy helps explain why an aqueous Na-ion system with Mn5O8 electrodes has a large voltage window and performs comparably to Li-ion batteries. ... Read more »
Scientists have found a way to engineer the atomic-scale chemical properties of a water-splitting catalyst for integration with a solar cell, and the result is a big boost to the stability and efficiency of artificial photosynthesis.
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Experiments confirm that structural defects at the periphery are key in catalyst function. The SINS study is an important step in chronicling how the atomic structure of nanoparticles impacts their function as catalysts in chemical reactions. ... Read more »
A team of researchers has employed a combination of measurements, including x-ray experiments at the ALS, to gather the most detailed information yet on problematic carbon-based deposits called “coke,” and to find ways to prevent its formation or reduce its effects. ... Read more »
Vanadyl phosphate can theoretically accept twice the number of lithium ions as battery materials currently in use. In practice, however, it doesn’t live up to expectations. New research at Beamline 6.3.1 using a variety of hard and soft x-ray spectroscopies helps zero in on why. ... Read more »