http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 14.18Change: 0.05
R/$ = 11.24Change: -0.02
Au 1210.44 $/ozChange: -7.53
Pt 1304.00 $/ozChange: -5.00
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Jul 27, 2012

Green energy requires an investment in chemistry

Back
Africa|CoAL|Components|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|Resources|Water|Africa|Brazil|India|South Africa|South African Chemical Institute|Chemicals Industry|Energy|Energy Efficiency|Energy Generation|Energy Solutions|Energy Usage|Solar Energy|Wind Energy|Vincent Nyamori|Water|Werner Van Zyl|Green Chemistry
Africa|CoAL|Components|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|Resources|Water|Africa|||Energy|Wind Energy|Water||
africa-company|coal|components|renewable-energy|renewable-energy-company|resources|water-company|africa|brazil|india|south-africa|south-african-chemical-institute|chemicals-industry|energy|energy-efficiency|energy-generation|energy-solutions|energy-usage|solar-energy|wind-energy|vincent-nyamori|water|werner-van-zyl|green-chemistry
© Reuse this

The chemicals industry is often overlooked as key to the generation of new and alternative energy solutions, says industry body South African Chemical Institute (SACI) Green Chemistry division chairperson Dr Vincent Nyamori.

“In South Africa, our current energy usage is finite and mainly relies on coal as a raw material, which has a high carbon footprint. “Finding solutions will ultimately rest on the shoulders of scientists and, in particular, chemists have a significant role to play.

“However, despite the importance of the chemicals industry for the betterment of society, it is sometimes viewed in a poor light because of the detrimental effects of some of its initiatives,” he says.

A green chemist must work, especially in energy generation, to revert the negative public perception and this can be achieved by developing innovative devices or designing methods to improve energy efficiency, he says.

Green chemistry can help to devise methods to garner solar energy for use in water purification and splitting water into oxygen and hydrogen, where the latter is used as a fuel. These steps involve the use of catalysts such as algae, which is derived from nature, and is renewable as well as sustainable, he explains.

“To innovate and to explore these new methods will require more investment in South Africa’s green-chemistry industry,” says SACI Green Chemistry division secretary Werner van Zyl.

There are solutions that need more funding and support. Wind energy will probably become a long-term solution, but the biggest game changer will ultimately come from the sun and water, he argues.

“Photocatalysts need to be developed that can use light energy to split water into hydrogen and oxygen components. “If this can be done with reasonable efficiency, there is enough energy density locked up in the covalent bonds of water molecules in a standard swimming pool to serve all South Africa’s energy needs for a year,” he says.

Currently, the costs of renewable resources are high, but they can be made economically and technologically viable through green chemistry, says Van Zyl.

The symbiotic relationship between green chemistry and renewable energy is undeniable and South Africa is exploring some exciting opportunities, avers Nyamori.

South Africa is part of a trilateral nanotechnology initiative, together with India and Brazil, to incorporate nanomaterials in photo- voltaic cell materials to improve solar energy efficiency.

“This research will enhance our capabilities to harness solar energy, which is a clean and sustainable source that can meet current and future energy demands.

“Solar energy can be an effective way of providing the necessary clean energy for sustainable development, especially in the context of poverty alleviation, clean water, remediated or uncontaminated environments, green cities, as well as other positive growth and developmental markers,” Nyamori concludes.

Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other Renewable Energy News
Japanese carmaker Toyota has revealed the exterior design and Japanese market-guide pricing of its hydrogen-powered fuel-cell sedan, following the car’s appearance in concept form at last year's Tokyo Motor Show. The four-door saloon will be introduced in Japan...
Article contains comments
Patricia de Lille, PJ Rabie and Dominic Chennells
In a boost for renewable energy, the City of Cape Town has signed its first small-scale embedded electricity generation contract with Black River Park Investments, an office park in Observatory.  The 74 000 m2 office park uses large-scale solar power systems to...
Article contains comments
The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) will release a consultation paper in February next year outlining the possible regulatory framework for “distributed power generation” in South Africa, including how “prosumers” could be empowered to feed surplus...
Article contains comments
More
 
 
Latest News
Updated 45 minutes ago As part of new listing requirements implemented by the JSE on Tuesday, companies listed on select international bourses will now be able to fast-track their secondary listings on the JSE. The local bourse announced to the market in August that it had made global...
Updated 45 minutes ago Mauritius has been ranked first in the Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG) 2014 for the eighth consecutive year, while South Africa ranked fourth overall and third in the region. Among the 52 countries rated by the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, Mauritius scored the...
Updated 1 hour 28 minutes ago The Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) says it is encouraged with the response to its new look and online transaction website. The new website was launched on 17 September, and the commission says it has received both positive and negative feedback.
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Road and Rail 2014 (PDF Report)
This six-page brief covers key developments in the road and rail industries over the past 12 months, including details of South Africa’s road and rail network and prospects for both sectors.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
The South African new vehicle market is likely to reach around 630 000 units in 2014, down from the 650 000 units recorded in 2013, says Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM) president and CEO Dr Johan van Zyl. Van Zyl is also president of the National Association of...
Efforts by the Kenya government to increase energy generation by 5 000 MW over the next three years received a major boost following the award of a $2-billion contract to build a coal power plant in Lamu.  Despite allegations of irregular tendering process, the...
Using crafty wordplay on a well-known Internet meme, brilliant South African-born US entrepreneur and businessperson Elon Musk announced that Tesla Motors would not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wanted to use its technology. Instead,...
August new vehicle sales declined by 1.4%, to 55 722 units, compared with the same month last year. Assisted by the car rental market, the South African new passenger car market, at 37 953 units, contracted by 1 047 units, or 2.7%, compared with August last year.
With South Africans facing the challenge of reducing electricity consumption, the biennial Eskom Energy Efficient Lighting Design Competition, to encourage the integration of energy efficient lighting in architectural, engineering and interior design, received a...
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks