• Question: Is it possible to split carbon dioxide into oxygen?

    Asked by 454kgrf46 to Adam, Eloise, Iona, Jarrod, Yip on 17 Jun 2016.
    • Photo: Man Hang Yip

      Man Hang Yip answered on 17 Jun 2016:

      Carbon dioxide can turn into oxygen naturally through photosynthesis.
      However, I have also read somewhere that some high energy laser can split the strong chemical bond between the oxygen and carbon molecules in carbon dioxide (CO2) into oxygen (O2).

    • Photo: Iona Strawson

      Iona Strawson answered on 17 Jun 2016:

      Plants was going to be my answer.

    • Photo: Jarrod Hart

      Jarrod Hart answered on 17 Jun 2016:

      When you burn a candle, you are combining oxygen and carbon, and you get CO2…

      In the process, you get energy out (heat and light), which is nice.

      The trouble with going the other way (splitting carbon and oxygen) is that you need to ‘put back’ the energy which is hard to do…

      As said above, plants figured out how to do this, using light as the energy source, it was perhaps the most important ‘inventions’ by life of earth!