The broad public knows carbon dioxide as the greenhouse gas that invades the atmosphere, now in the 21st century. The thing is that we cannot just reduce human emissions now. It is too late. However, a new solving has been reported by a team of researchers at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). The team has developed a simple method to transform carbon dioxide into a useful resource – graphene.
While graphene is quite necessary – essentially, just a two-dimensional layer of carbon atoms – it is widely used as it is a superconducting, flexible, and durable material.
Initially, it was made by separating sheets off of graphite with sticky tape, but in the last years, researchers have been able to develop it in a variety of different ways.
These methods include laser-etching it from wood or even food or chemically, decreasing it from soybeans or eucalyptus leaves.
Graphene can be made using carbon dioxide
The most used method for creating mass graphene is chemical vapor deposition (CVD). In this approach, a carbon source, most often methane gas, is wired into a chamber together with other gases, and a thin layer of a material acts like a catalyst and a substrate.
The gas in the room chemically responds with the material and creates a thin sheet of graphene on the surface. The KIT team’s method is similar to the CVD technique, but it uses Co2 as a carbon source, giving it the extra benefit of removing this troublesome gas from the atmosphere.
In this instance, CO2 and hydrogen are pumped into the chamber, and the catalyst and substrate is a wafer composed of copper and palladium. The process is settled at atmospheric pressure and high temperatures of up to 1,000° C (1,832° F).
The researching team was able to show that the method functions, even using it to create graphene that is a few layers thick. The next step is to attempt to make functioning electronic components utilizing this technique. The study was issued in the journal ChemSusChem.