The researchers found that the Archaea, using about the same electrical input, could use the current to convert carbon dioxide and water to methane without any organic material, bacteria or hydrogen usually found in microbial electrolysis cells.Hopefully they can get this to work at scale and at an economic cost. Of course I am still waiting for microbes that can turn electricity, water and CO2 into glucose.
"We have a microbe that is self perpetuating that can accept electrons directly, and use them to create methane," said Logan.
The cells are about 80 percent efficient in converting electricity to methane and because they use carbon dioxide as feed stock, would be carbon neutral if the electricity comes from a non-carbon source such as solar or wind power.
Logan suggests the method for off peak capture of renewable energy in a portable fuel. Methane is preferred over hydrogen because a large portion of the U.S. infrastructure is already set up to easily transport and deliver methane.
via GCC and ScienceDaily