The goal of Subtask 3 "Fuel Production Complex" is to develop a bio-inspired catalyst capable of generating molecular hydrogen from aqueous protons.

The initial fuel production goal is hydrogen. Implementation of the subtask involves a construction of proton reducing catalyst based on de novo synthesized peptides that mimic the natural hydrogenase enzymes that organisms use for hydrogen production. In the complex electrons for proton reduction will be provided by the artificial reaction center (Subtask 4). Because two electrons are required for hydrogen production, the fuel production complex will also contain a synthetic electron accumulator based on biological iron-sulfur proteins.

People working on Subtask 3

Souvik Roy
Graduate student
Sandip Shinde
Postdoctoral Fellow
Patrick Kwan
Graduate student
Matthieu Walther
Postdoctoral Fellow
Lu Gan
Postdoctoral fellow
Kevin Redding
Associate Director of the Center
Principal Investigator
Giovanna Ghirlanda
Principal Investigator
Subtask 3 Leader
Chelsea McIntosh
Graduate student
Bhupesh Goyal
Postdoctoral fellow
Arnab Dutta
Graduate student
Anne Jones
Principal Investigator
Anindya Roy
Graduate student

Major projects of Subtask 3

  1. Proton reduction catalysts inspired by hydrogenase enzymes
  2. Synthetic peptides as molecular “wires” and functional environments for modulating catalytic function

Research news on Subtask 3

24 Jan 2013

Researchers from the laboratory of Giovanna Ghirlanda working on Subtask 3 (Fuel Production Complex) have achieved the synthesis of a peptide-based hydrogenase mimic that is capable of photoinduced hydrogen production. Results of the study have been published in the October 11, 2012, issue of Chemical Communications and the article has been featured on the cover of that issue.

Recent papers on Subtask 3

  1. Trovitch, R.J. (2014) Comparing Well-Defined Manganese, Iron, Cobalt, and Nickel Ketone Hydrosilylation Catalysts, Synlett, published online May 8, 2014, (Read online)"
  2. Faiella, M., Roy, A., Sommer, D., Ghirlanda, G. (2013) De novo design of functional proteins: Toward artificial hydrogenases, Biopolymers, 100, 558 - 571 (Read online)"
  3. Roy, A,, Sarrou, I., Vaughn, M.D., Astashkin, A.V., and Ghirlanda, G. (2013) De novo Design of an Artificial bis-[4Fe4S] Binding Protein, Biochemistry, 52, 7586–7594 (Read online)"
  4. Ghirlanda, G. (2013) Computational Biology: A Recipe for Ligand-Binding Proteins, Nature, 501, 177-178 (Read online)"
  5. Dutta, A., Flores, M., Roy, S., Schmitt, J., Hamilton, G. A., Hartnett, H., Shearer, J., and Jones, A. (2013) Sequential Oxidations of Thiolates and the Cobalt Metallocenter in a Synthetic Metallopeptide: Implications for the Biosynthesis of Nitrile Hydratase, Inorganic Chemistry, 52 (9), 5236-5245 (Read online)"
  6. Roy, S., Groy, T., Jones, A.K. (2013) Biomimetic model for [FeFe]-hydrogenase: Asymmetrically disubstituted diiron complex with a redox-active 2,2'-bipyridyl ligand, Dalton Transactions, 42, 3843-3853 (Read online)"
  7. Ashur, I. and Jones, A. K. (2012) Immobilization of azurin with retention of its native electrochemical properties at alkylsilane self-assembled monolayer modified indium tin oxide, Electrochimica Acta, 85, 169–174 (Read online)"
  8. Dutta, A., Hamilton, G. A., Hartnett, H. E., Jones, A. K. (2012) Construction of Heterometallic Clusters in a small peptide scaffold as [NiFe]-hydrogenase models: Development of a Synthetic Methodology, Inorganic Chemistry, 51, 9580–9588 (Read online)"
  9. Roy, A., Madden, C., and Ghirlanda, G. (2012) Photo-induced hydrogen production in a helical peptide incorporating a [FeFe] hydrogenase active site mimic, Chemical Communications, 48, 9816–9818 (Read online)"
  10. Ashur, I., Schulz, O., McIntosh, C. L., Pinkas, I., Ros, R., and Jones, A. K. (2012) Transparent Gold as a Platform for Adsorbed Protein Spectroelectrochemistry: Investigation of Cytochrome c and Azurin, Langmuir, 28, 5861-5871 (Read online)"
  11. Kwan, P., Schmitt, D., Volosin, A. M., McIntosh, C. L., Seo, D.-K., and Jones, A. K. (2011) Spectroelectrochemistry of cytochrome c and azurin immobilized in nanoporous antimony-doped tin oxide, Chemical Communications, 47, 12367-12369 (Read online)"
  12. McIntosh, C. L., Germer, F., Schulz, R., Appel, J., and Jones, A. K. (2011) The [NiFe]-hydrogenase of the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 works bidirectionally with a bias to H2 production, Journal of the American Chemical Society, 133, 11308-11319 (Read online)"
  13. Jones, A.K., McIntosh, C.L., Dutta, A., Kwan, P., Roy, S., Yang, S. (2013) Bioelectrocatalysis of hydrogen oxidation/production by hydrogenases, In: Enzymatic fuel cells: From fundamentals to applications. Edited by H. Luckarift, G. Johnson and P. Attanasov, Wiley-VCH, Weinheim, Germany, in press, (Read online)"
Center for Bio-Inspired Solar Fuel Production 
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