Researchers discovered an Enzyme that Produce Electricity from Thin Air
Present generation luxurious lifestyles resulting in increasing electric power demands are impacting the environment.
But soon, we can produce clean energy from thin air by utilizing natural enzymes. A microbiologist team from Monash University in Australia has discovered a bacterial enzyme named Huc, usually found in soil, which can produce electricity from hydrogen in our atmosphere.
Their research work was published in Nature journal on 15th march, in which they mentioned the enzyme as a “hydrogen gas scavenger” found in Mycobacterium smegmatis. This bacterium uses the Huc enzyme to grow in harsh environments like the deep ocean, volcano craters, and Antarctic soils.
The big challenge was to isolate enzymes from bacteria. Still, thanks to biochemical technological advancements, the lead researcher developed a series of new methods by first growing the bacteria and then isolating the single enzyme with the help of chemistry.
All soil bacteria consume more than 77 million tons of hydrogen annually. From that, around 60-80% of bacteria have Huc enzymes, which have great potential for electricity production.
But the current problem is the enzyme has small-scale power applications, like it can be used as a hydrogen sensor.
The microbiologist concluded that the enzyme has a huge potential in the energy sector. For that, much work is required to produce Huc in large quantities to expand its application.