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ABSTRACT: Thermochemical cycles that split water into stoichiometric amounts of hydrogen and oxygen below 1,000 °C, and do not involve toxic or corrosive intermediates, are highly desirable because they can convert heat into chemical energy in the form of hydrogen. We report a manganese-based thermochemical cycle with a highest operating temperature of 850 °C that is completely recyclable and does not involve toxic or corrosive components. The thermochemical cycle utilizes redox reactions of Mn(II)/Mn(III) oxides. The shuttling of Na(+) into and out of the manganese oxides in the hydrogen and oxygen evolution steps, respectively, provides the key thermodynamic driving forces and allows for the cycle to be closed at temperatures below 1,000 °C. The production of hydrogen and oxygen is fully reproducible for at least five cycles.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 05/2012; 109(24):9260-4. · 9.74 Impact Factor