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April 13th, 2005
Imagine being able to tap the energy released during exothermic reactions on surfaces.
Now, a research team has constructed a nanoscale device known as a Schottky diode and used it to measure a continuous flow of hot electrons generated by catalytic surface reactions. Specifically, the group--which includes chemistry professor Gabor A. Somorjai and postdoc Xiaozhong (Eric) Ji of the University of California, Berkeley, and Anthony Zuppero and Jawahar M. Gidwani of San Francisco-based NeoKismet--measured a continuous current of 40 µamp produced via oxidation of carbon monoxide on a platinum electrode for more than half an hour.
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