In a study of researchers from the Ulsan National Institute of Sciences and Technology (UNIST), a team of researchers presents the possibility of using eggshells as a catalyst to produce hydrogen and graphene.
The researchers, led by Jong-Beom Baek, used calcium oxide in the laboratory with calcium carbonate (the main ingredients of eggshells) and discovered that these materials can be used as catalysts at a lower temperature than that of conventional catalysts.
The chemical reaction sees a layer of thin carbon inserted over the calcium oxide to form graphene. The latter can then be easily removed. With other reactions pure hydrogen can also be obtained. In the press release on the Korean Institute’s website, they talk about “three birds with one stone: with this procedure, we can obtain value-added hydrogen and graphene using a technique that recycles food waste such as eggshells.”
“Calcium oxide is a cheap material and is ecological because it can be produced from recycled eggshells,” says Baek himself. “Both hydrogen and graphene are cheap because they can be used without any separation process.”
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