Let There Be Light, Indeed
PHOTO COURTESY OF GERMAN AEROSPACE CENTER
Let there be light, indeed. In the search for renewable energy solutions, scientists in Jülich, Germany flipped the switch on a giant artificial sun in March. The project team's goal is to master a hydrogen-making technique that could one day be applied to natural sunlight, creating a limitless supply of hydrogen fuel. The element, which is rarely found by itself on Earth, doesn't produce carbon dioxide when burned. The US$3.8 million Synlight project, which involves 149 xenon lamps, produces light that is roughly 10,000 times more intense than natural sunlight. Just don't look right at it.