Main objective

SOREC2 is dedicated to pioneering a novel technology that directly converts sunlight, CO2 and water into added-value chemicals such as ethanol or ethylene, enabling safe and efficient energy storage.

The consortium will develop a compact tandem photo-electrochemical cell (PEC) powered by direct sunlight, incorporating:

  • Organo-metallic water oxidation catalysis (WOC), stable at ph7
  • Metal oxide/organic PV/perovskite PV triple tandem
  • Photonic nano-structures for broadband sunlight harvesting
  • Cathode for CO2 reduction (CO2R) based on concerted proton-electron transfer molecular mediator (CPET) catalysis

Specific objectives

Implement photo-electrochemistry for CO2R into C2 products in an aqueous solution, leveraging water oxidation at the photoanode to provide the necessary protons and electrons for C2 compound formation at the cathode, consisting of a catalyst and a CPET molecular mediator.

Implement a multilayered broadband sunlight absorbing structure to achieve the desired high current densities and voltages incorporating:

  • n-type semiconductor photoanode
  • T-OPV
  • PVK solar cells

Develop a compact PEC ensemble to achieve sun-powered CO2R using novel catalyst with a selectivity exceeding 70% into C2 products and a WOC Faradaic efficiency of ~100%.

Elaborate a roadmap to take the PEC technology beyond Technology Readiness Level (TRL4).

Identify the impacts of SOREC2’s technology, and the strategies for a successful market uptake.