The potential of solar energy use is just as great as the scientific and technological questions associated with it. New biomimetic and carbon-based approaches are currently being pursued for applications in both photovoltaics and artificial photosynthesis.
Through artificial photosynthesis, the efficiency of the natural process itself could be increased in the long term, for example through genetic engineering or synthetic biology. Such bio-inspired energy research is placed somewhere between bio and nanotechnology, with important input from molecular biology and microbiology. Light-dependent metal catalysis techniques, for example involving the photocatalytic conversion of CO2 to methanol, can be seen as alternative, complementary or supplementary approaches. Here, sunlight is absorbed by organic dyes and its energy is used to activate CO2 in a combination of new catalytic processes and approaches from nanotechnology and materials research.
The aim of the project is to provide an initial overview of the various research trends in this field and to establish a concrete research demand in Germany for its technical usability until the year 2050.
ML = Member of the Leopoldina
Statement on Artificial Photosynthesis (2018, German)