HyperSolar, Inc. a Santa Barbara, California-based developer of technology that produces renewable hydrogen, using sunlight and any source of water, reported that the Australian government awarded the company a patent. The patent entitled “Multi-junction artificial photosynthetic cell with enhanced photovoltages” issued as Patent No. 2015231504 is jointly owned by HyperSolar and the Regents of the University of California. The company worked with the University of California, Santa Barbara to develop the technology.
According to the company, the patent protects the firm’s proprietary design of a self-contained, high-voltage solar-to-hydrogen device comprised of billions of solar-powered water-splitting nanoparticles, per square centimeter. These nanoparticles consist of multiple layers of solar cells stacked atop one another to increase the photovoltages for increased solar-to-hydrogen conversion efficiency.
HyperSolar Technology Uses Arrays of Nano-sized Solar Cells Serve as Hydrogen Production Units
The patented technology integrates high-density arrays of nano-sized high voltage solar cells that serve as the core hydrogen production units. A roll-to-roll process can produce the nanoparticles on ultra-thin sheets. Hydrosolar claims that the materials for the fabrication and the manufacturing process cost substantially less than that of conventional solar cells used in rooftop power applications. Furthermore, the company says that the manufacturing process maximizes raw material utilization and has a low physical and carbon footprint.
HyperSolar’s research focuses on developing an entirely renewable, low-cost and submersible hydrogen production particle that can split water molecules into hydrogen and oxygen using the power of the sun, emulating the core functions of photosynthesis. Each particle serves as a complete hydrogen generator and contains a novel high voltage solar cell bonded to chemical catalysts by a proprietary encapsulation coating.
HyperSolar’s CEO Tim Young commented, “With abundant land and sun, Australia offers huge opportunity for our renewable hydrogen. Both Toyota and Hyundai have committed to bringing hydrogen fuel-cell cars to Australia. The patent is critical to protecting the intellectual property related to the development our GEN 2 technology. ”