Santa Barbara, CA-based Hypersolar Inc. has filed a patent application for the production of a carbon-neutral methane gas made using sunlight, water and carbon dioxide (CO2) that the company said “can be used as a direct replacement for traditional natural gas.” HyperSolar is developing a solar-powered nanoparticle system that mimics photosynthesis to separate hydrogen from water; the hydrogen can then be reacted with CO2 to produce methane “without drilling or [hydraulic fracturing],” the company said.

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