DNP to Participate in ARPChem and Contribute to a Carbon-Free Society with Technology that Extracts Hydrogen from Water using Sunlight and Photocatalysts

Tokyo, March 1, 2022, Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd. (DNP) is pleased to announce its participation in second-phase Research and Development (R&D) activities at the Japan Technological Research Association of Artificial Photosynthetic Chemical Process (ARPChem). ARPChem phase-2 aims to establish mass production technology for Green Hydrogen that can be produced without carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, by using sunlight, which is a renewable energy.

In addition, this activity has been adopted as a Green Innovation Fund Project by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO), which supports technologies that contribute to Carbon Neutrality by 2050.

ARPChem Hydrogen Production Technology

Given that hydrogen energy does not emit CO2 when used, it is attracting attention as a next-generation energy that contributes to decarbonization. Currently, most hydrogen is produced via extraction from fossil fuels, such as natural gas, and to achieve decarbonization is necessary to combine it with other technologies, such as capturing CO2 generated in production processes, and burying it in the ground.

In answer to this challenges, the hydrogen production technology developed by ARPChem can extract hydrogen from water using sunlight, a renewable energy, thereby producing Green Hydrogen that does not emit CO2 during the production process.

DNP Participation in ARPChem

  • ARPChem is a research association formed mainly by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI). The production format for hydrogen based on photocatalysts that ARPChem is working on is a simple system that can significantly reduce power consumption compared to hydrogen production technology based on electrolysis used in the generation of renewable energy, which at present is considered as mainstream Green Hydrogen. At the same time, it also has the potential to lower hydrogen costs. First phase activities from FY 2012 to FY 2021 achieved results, including the world’s first successful large-scale demonstration experiment of Artificial Photosynthesis.
  • Second phase activities from FY 2021 to FY 2030 will see companies, universities and research institutes combine their unique technological strengths to promote technological development that anticipates social implementation under themes, such as the development of more efficient photocatalysts and hydrogen separation membranes, while also verifying their safety.
  • DNP maintains proprietary strengths in Printing and Information (P&I) applied and expanded based on printing processes. We will also utilize technologies, such as those which uniformly coat functional materials, or that for shaping micromorphologies, along with converting technology that laminates functional film and sheeting. We have also commenced joint research with Professor Katsuya Teshima of Shinshu University, who is advancing research on photocatalysts based on a unique crystallization technology, known as the Flux Method. In addition, through cooperation with numerous universities, research institutes and companies, we will also work on the development of catalyst sheeting that can extract hydrogen in an efficient manner.

Companies, Universities and Research Institutes Participating in ARPChem

  • Companies:
    INPEX Corporation, JX Nippon Mining & Metals Corporation, Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd., Dexerials Corporation, Toray Industries Inc., Toyota Motor Corporation, Nippon Steel Corporation, Furuya Metal Co., Ltd., Mitsui Chemicals, Inc., Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation. (no particular order)
  • Universities and Research Institutes:
    Kyoto University, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Shinshu University, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo University of Science, Tohoku University, Nagoya University, Yamaguchi University (no particular order)

Going Forward

By combining our strengths in P&I, and deepening our collaboration with our partners towards the realization of a better sustainable society, DNP is working to overcome social challenges and create new value that responds to the expectations of consumers. We constantly promote corporate activities that aim to achieve a balance between the global environment and the economy, and through our participation in ARPChem we will accelerate hydrogen energy R&D along with our numerous partners.


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