A crucial factor in the fight against the anthropogenic climate change is the reduction of greenhouse gases. There are a few carbon capture and storage technologies but these are only short-term solutions. An additional way to decrease greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is the conversion of CO2 to more valuable chemicals like green fuels. Known technologies are based on thermal or electrochemical catalysis. These technologies need high temperatures and pressures (in case of thermic catalysis) or show bad product selectivity (in case of electro catalysis).
Enzymatic catalyzed reactions run at room temperature and atmospheric pressure and show a very good product selectivity since every enzyme catalyzes only one reaction path. These enzymatic reactions need cofactors like NADH as energy source of their reaction. Aim of the interdisciplinary project Reducto is a cycle process in which enzymes reduce CO2 to more valuable green chemicals while an electrochemical cell is used to recover the needed cofactor from the waste products of the reaction.
The project is financed with funding from the European Union and the State of Bremen, the Senator for Climate Change Mitigation, Environment, Mobility, Urban Development and Housing Construction, the Applied Environmental Research funding programme. It is in cooperation with the group of neurobiochemistry under supervision of Prof. Dr. Dringen. While the biochemists focus on the enzymatic CO2 reduction, our working group works on an improvement of the NADH recovery. Regular meetings and collaboration distinguishes this interdisciplinary research project.