Methane Gas To Methane Catalyst: Everything To Know About Scientific Discovery

By Piyali Roy | Feb 25, 2017 08:34 PM EST
Scientists Discover How Essential Methane Catalyst Is Made

A new discovery is on its way, in which carbon dioxide (CO2) is tried to convert into methane gas to generate energy. The concept behind this discovery is that the scientists have found a bacterium that makes a component that facilitates all the process of converting carbon dioxide (CO2) into methane gas.

According to Space Daily, the recycling of Carbon dioxide (CO2) into energy has an immense capacity for making these harmful emissions into useful once, rather than making them a major factor in global warming. Thus, this discovery of converting of Carbon dioxide (CO2) into methane gas can turn into something positive contributing into the improvement of the environment also.

However, the bacteria which can convert carbon dioxide (CO2) into methane is methanogen which is notoriously difficult to grow and therefore their use in converting carbon dioxide into methane gas production is limited. These are the challenges, which inspired a team of scientists from University of Kent's School of Biosciences, led by Professor Martin Warren to investigate how the key molecule, coenzyme F430, is made in these bacteria.

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Science Daily reports that coenzyme F430, the catalyst for the production process has a very similar structure to the red pigment found in red blood cells (haem) and green pigment found in plants (chlorophyll). This bright yellow coenzyme allows methanogenic bacteria to breathe in carbon dioxide and exhale methane gas.

The researchers also found that the coenzyme F430 is made from the starting modular template from which chlorophyll and haem are derived, but they use a different suite of enzymes to convert this starting material into coenzyme F430. It is also found that the key to this process is the insertion of a metal ion which is in the center of the coenzyme. Thus, an overall idea is made that the process of biological methane production, methanogenesis such as coenzyme F430 have made scientist a step closer to discover an effective and obliging methane production bacterium.

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