Hydrogen production with CuO/ZnO nanowire catalyst for a nanocatalytic solar thermal steam-methanol reformer

Hironori Nakajima, Daeho Lee, Ming Tsang Lee, Costas P. Grigoropoulos

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4 Citations (Scopus)


We have fabricated CuO/ZnO nanowire (NW) catalyst for hydrogen production by solar thermal steam-methanol reforming (SMR). Such NW catalyst is expected to be more durable than the conventional nanoparticle catalysts by avoiding agglomeration. ZnO NWs are synthesized by hydrothermal growth on quartz and glass substrates. The ZnO NWs are then coated with CuO by thermal decomposition of copper nitrate using UV pulsed laser as a heat source for prototyping. A solar simulator is used as a heat source for the demonstration of the SMR in water/methanol mixture solution. Gas chromatograph (GC) exhibits increasing mole fraction of produced hydrogen with irradiated time. We then fabricate the catalyst on a large area glass plate substrate by the CuO deposition using an electric heater to confirm the SMR and demonstrate scaling-up. The SMR is briefly demonstrated by feeding water vapor/methanol mixture gas to the catalyst heated by an electric heater, giving thermally produced hydrogen (CO/H2 = 0.019) in the product gas detected by GC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16927-16931
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Issue number38
Publication statusPublished - Oct 15 2016


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology

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