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Utah News

Out of Thin Air: Making Fertilizer with Sunlight

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Al Hicks
/
National Renewable Energy Laboratory

A new scientific discovery may change the way we make fertilizer. A team of researchers have found a new way to produce Ammonia (NH3) from atmospheric Nitrogen (N2) using sunlight instead of fossil fuels. The discovery may have profound effects on the sustainability of food production.

 

 

 

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Credit Mary-Ann Muffoletto / Utah State University
/
Utah State University
The old way of fixing Nitrogen (left) and the new way (right).

 

FullInterview_LanceSeefeldt.mp3
Listen to the full interview with Dr. Lance Seefeldt here.

The study was published in the academic journal Science. It is available (behind a paywall) here: Light-driven dinitrogen reduction catalyzed by a CdS:nitrogenaseMoFe protein biohybrid

 

 

Songs featured in this story:

The Obvious Child by Paul Simon

True Affection by The Blow