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The Center for Hybrid Approaches in Solar Energy to Liquid Fuels is a DOE Energy Innovation Hub headquartered in the Chemistry Department at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

CHASE includes research partners at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Yale University, Brookhaven National Laboratory, the University of Pennsylvania, North Carolina State University, and Emory University and was initiated in 2020 by the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science, Office of Basic Energy Sciences 


To develop molecule/material hybrid photoelectrodes for cooperative sunlight-driven generation of liquid fuels from carbon dioxide, nitrogen, and water



Pairing the light-absorbing properties of semiconductor materials with the selective fuel-producing reactivity of molecular catalysts, CHASE will advance a new paradigm of liquid solar fuels generation. This vast, mostly unexplored space at the intersection between molecular catalysts and heterogeneous materials presents unique opportunities for breakthroughs in photocatalyst durability and access to high-octane liquid fuels.

The overarching five-year goals of CHASE are captured in three complementary thrusts:

1.  Understand the fundamental principles and design strategies that enable the integration of durable semiconductor light absorbers with molecular catalysts to drive liquid fuel production (INTEGRATION THRUST)
2.  Tailor the local environment around the catalyst on a molecular scale to direct reactivity along desired pathways (MICROENVIRONMENTS THRUST)
3.  Develop design principles that enable the cooperative integrated photosynthesis of liquid fuels through multi-catalyst cascades (CASCADES THRUST)



Each research thrust directly addresses all four DOE Priority Research Opportunities in Liquid Solar Fuels