Photocatalysts for Clean Energy and Environment

The purpose of this research is to develop new photo-catalysts. Photo-catalysts are materials that absorb energy from sunlight, and


use this energy to treat contaminated water to produce clean water, and to produce clean energy sources such as hydrogen from water. This research investigates new compositions and structures of these photo-catalysts, with the objective of increasing their efficiency and stability.

Faculty Advisor: Pratap Rao | WPI (Mechanical and Materials Engineering)

Teacher Component: The teachers will participate in this project by investigating a particular novel photo-catalyst composition or structure for a particular target process, alongside postdoctoral scholar and PhD student mentors. Examples of possible processes that can be targeted include removing a particular heavy metal or organic contaminant from water, or producing hydrogen fuel from water. The teachers will be trained in the synthesis of a photo-catalyst material and in measuring the efficiency and stability of the photo-catalyst for the targeted process.