Photocatalytic Reforming of Biomass: What Role Will the Technology Play in Future Energy Systems

Nathan Skillen, Helen Daly, Lan Lan, Meshal Aljohani, Christopher W.J. Murnaghan, Xiaolei Fan, Christopher Hardacre, Gary N. Sheldrake, Peter K.J. Robertson

Research output: Journal PublicationReview articlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Photocatalytic reforming of biomass has emerged as an area of significant interest within the last decade. The number of papers published in the literature has been steadily increasing with keywords such as ‘hydrogen’ and ‘visible’ becoming prominent research topics. There are likely two primary drivers behind this, the first of which is that biomass represents a more sustainable photocatalytic feedstock for reforming to value-added products and energy. The second is the transition towards achieving net zero emission targets, which has increased focus on the development of technologies that could play a role in future energy systems. Therefore, this review provides a perspective on not only the current state of the research but also a future outlook on the potential roadmap for photocatalytic reforming of biomass. Producing energy via photocatalytic biomass reforming is very desirable due to the ambient operating conditions and potential to utilise renewable energy (e.g., solar) with a wide variety of biomass resources. As both interest and development within this field continues to grow, however, there are challenges being identified that are paramount to further advancement. In reviewing both the literature and trajectory of the field, research priorities can be identified and utilised to facilitate fundamental research alongside whole systems evaluation. Moreover, this would underpin the enhancement of photocatalytic technology with a view towards improving the technology readiness level and promoting engagement between academia and industry.

Original languageEnglish
Article number33
JournalTopics in Current Chemistry
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Biomass
  • Energy
  • Hydrogen
  • Photocatalysis
  • Technology readiness level (TRL)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry (all)


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