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Artificial photosynthesis can produce food without sunshine
Posted by: Prof. Dr. M. Raupp (IP Logged)
Date: July 07, 2022 02:03PM

Scientists from the University of California, Riverside, and the
University of Delaware have found a way to bypass biological
photosynthesis and create food without sunlight by using artificial

The research team used a two-step electrocatalytic process to convert
carbon dioxide, electricity, and water into acetate, the form of the
main component of vinegar. Food-producing organisms then consumed
acetate in the dark to grow. Using solar panels to generate the
electricity to power the electrocatalysis, this hybrid organic-inorganic
system could increase the conversion efficiency of sunlight into food by
up to 18 times more efficient for some foods.

Their experiments showed that food-producing organisms can be grown in
the dark on the acetate-rich electrolyzer output, including green algae,
yeast, and fungal mycelium that produce mushrooms. Producing algae with
this technology is approximately four-fold more energy efficient than
growing it photosynthetically. Yeast production is about 18-fold more
energy efficient than how it is typically cultivated using sugar
extracted fromcorn.

Scientists are now looking at the potential of using this technology to
grow crop plants. Cowpea, tomato, tobacco,rice, canola, and green pea
were all able to use carbon from acetate when grown in the dark.


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