Nitrogenase: Enabling Solar-Powered Ammonia

June 22nd, 2022

R&D Focus Areas:
Biological hydrogen production, Direct hydrogen carrier production

Lead Organisation:

Not applicable


Start date:
July 2019

Completion date:
February 2027

Key contacts:
Trevor Rapson:

CSIRO – Hydrogen Energy Systems Future Science Platform (2019-2022)
CSIRO – Impossible without you program (2022-2025)
CSIRO – Revolutionary Energy Storage Systems (2024-2027)

Project total cost:
AUD$880,000 – Hydrogen FSP
AUD $927,240 – RESS FSP
AUD $927,240 – IWY

Project summary description:
Nature uses nitrogenase as a key component of its process to fix nitrogen from the air using energy from the sun. This project builds on CSIRO’s nitrogenase engineering expertise to lay the foundation for a technology that generates ammonia (and hydrogen) using air, water, and sunshine — all at ambient conditions.

Related publications and key links:
Rapson TD, Gregg CM, Allen, RS, Ju, HK, Doherty, C.M, Mulet, X, Giddey, S, Wood, CC Insights into nitrogenase bioelectrocatalysis for green ammonia production ChemSusChem (2020) 13, 4856-4865

Rapson TD, Wood, CC Analysis of the ammonia production rates by nitrogenase Catalysts (2022) 12, 844,

Wiskich A, Rapson TD Economics of emerging ammonia fertilizer production methods (2023) e202300565,

Higher degree studies supported:
Not applicable


Reviewed: November 2023