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We Can Now Convert Carbon Dioxide Back Into Ethanol

Scientists at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have developed a catalyst that “essentially reverses” the combustion of ethanol, directly converting carbon dioxide into ethanol, discussed in a publication in ChemistrySelect.

The discovery was serendipitous. “We discovered somewhat by accident that this material worked,” said Adam Rondinone, lead author of the study. “We were trying to study the first step of a proposed reaction when we realized that the catalyst was doing the entire reaction on its own.”