Solar breakthrough: Water to hydrogen with 60% efficiency

British scientists say they've achieved a breakthrough, figuring out how to extract hydrogen from water with an unheard-of 60% efficiency using solar energy. The secret sauce is nanotechnology, in the form of nanoclusters of indium phosphide encrusted on a gold electrode. Using this, they can turn sunlight into that hotshot hydrogen fuel, clean-burning and as energetic as a swift kick in the ass.

Next trick: turning water into wine.

What's the catch? Well, gold happens to be exorbitantly expensive, and becoming more so as markets become less stable. So these guys are looking for a way to make this miraculous alchemy occur without using precious metals. In fact, the researchers say there's "no special reason to use gold or platinum," and mentioned the gold just "happened to be lying about the lab." Apparently there's tremendous amounts of money involved in hydrogen research.

Hey, this could be useful for fueling that Bloom Box, eliminating the need for propane and making it actually practical.

Via Treehugger