Solar Driven Photocatalytic Fuel Cells: an Environmentally Friendly Innovation of Power Plant Technology as Energy Source


Nowadays, the demand of energy in Indonesia is still dominated by fossil fuel. In 2013, fossil fuel contributed 94.3 % of the total energy. Production of fossil fuel or conventional energy sources such as coal, oil, and gas that are widely used to fulfill the energy needs in the world has been decreasing very significantly. One of energy supply problems resulting from the deficiency of fossil fuel energy is unequal distribution of electricity in areas of Indonesia. To overcome the energy supply issues, hence hydrogen can be used as energy supplier because it has been proven to be potential and prospective alternative energy source. The hydrogen resulted from water electrolysis can be used as the main component of fuel cells technology. Fuel cells technology is a kind of renewable energy that is clean and safe. It also has high energy efficiency. Power plant using fuel cells technology is then used as energy supplier for public street lighting in the remote areas which lack of electricity supply from Electricity Company or PLN. However, those areas should have abundant sources of water to be converted into hydrogen.  Here we explore the idea of designing Solar Driven Photocatalytic Fuel Cells. The first step is to synthesize nitrogen dopped titanium dioxide (N-TiO2) nanotubes/dye by using hydrothermal method on Fluorine Tin Oxide (FTO) substrate. Then use it as a photoanode, Silicon (Si) is used as cathode by putting the metal into Hydrofluoric acid (HF) liquid. The hydrogen will be generated from water electrolysis. Then use the hydrogen as a fuel. The fuel cells can generate electricity without combustion of fuel and produce zero pollution.

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