The team composed of ARPChem, Tokyo and Shinshu University has developed an inexpensive and fast process to develop single crystals of tantalum nitride which decompose water using visible light in the 400 to 600 nm visible light region. Since this is the wavelength region with the highest intensity of sunlight in the vicinity of 600 nm, efficient energy utilization can be expected.Immobilized on a substrate, the catalyst can also be incorporated into a photocatalyst panel reactor. Next steps in the project will now focus on a separation membrane and module for separating hydrogen from a mixture of hydrogen and oxygen, and on catalysts and process technology for synthesizing C2 to C4 olefins using hydrogen in combination with carbon dioxide discharged from power plants and factories.

NEDO news release, September 4, 2018