Tuning methane decomposition on stepped Ni surface: The role of subsurface atoms in catalyst design.
ABSTRACT: The decomposition of methane (CH4) is a catalytically important reaction in the production of syngas that is used to make a wide spectrum of hydrocarbons and alcohols, and a principal carbon deposition pathway in methane reforming. Literatures suggest that stepped Ni surface is uniquely selective toward methane decomposition to atomic C, contrary to other catalysts that favor the CH fragment. In this paper, we used dispersion-corrected density functional theory-based first principles calculations to identify the electronic factors that govern this interesting property of stepped Ni surface. We found that the adsorption of atomic C on this surface is uniquely characterized by a 5-coordinated bonding of C with Ni atoms from both the surface and subsurface layers. Comparison with Ru surface indicates the importance of the subsurface atoms of stepped Ni surface on its selectivity toward methane decomposition to atomic C. Interestingly, we found that substituting these subsurface atoms with other elements can dramatically change the reaction mechanism of methane decomposition, suggesting a new approach to catalyst design for hydrocarbon reforming applications.
Project description:Dry reforming of methane (DRM) is an attractive route to utilize CO2 as a chemical feedstock with which to convert CH4 into valuable syngas and simultaneously mitigate both greenhouse gases. Ni-based DRM catalysts are promising due to their high activity and low cost, but suffer from poor stability due to coke formation which has hindered their commercialization. Herein, we report that atomically dispersed Ni single atoms, stabilized by interaction with Ce-doped hydroxyapatite, are highly active and coke-resistant catalytic sites for DRM. Experimental and computational studies reveal that isolated Ni atoms are intrinsically coke-resistant due to their unique ability to only activate the first C-H bond in CH4, thus avoiding methane deep decomposition into carbon. This discovery offers new opportunities to develop large-scale DRM processes using earth abundant catalysts.
Project description:The generation of synthesis gas (hydrogen and carbon monoxide mixture) from two global warming gases of carbon dioxide and methane via dry reforming is environmentally crucial and for the chemical industry as well. Herein, magnesium-promoted NiO supported on mesoporous zirconia, 5Ni/xMg-ZrO2 (x?=?0, 3, 5, 7 wt%) were prepared by wet impregnation method and then were tested for syngas production via dry reforming of methane. The reaction temperature at 800 °C was found more catalytically active than that at 700 °C due to the endothermic feature of reaction which promotes efficient CH4 catalytic decomposition over Ni and Ni-Zr interface as confirmed by CH4-TSPR experiment. NiO-MgO solid solution interacted with ZrO2 support was found crucial and the reason for high CH4 and CO2 conversions. The highest catalyst stability of the 5Ni/3Mg-ZrO2 catalyst was explained by the ability of CO2 to partially oxidize the carbon deposit over the surface of the catalyst. A mole ratio of hydrogen to carbon monoxide near unity (H2/CO?~?1) was obtained over 5Ni/ZrO2 and 5Ni/5Mg-ZrO2, implying the important role of basic sites. Our approach opens doors for designing cheap and stable dry reforming catalysts from two potent greenhouse gases which could be of great interest for many industrial applications, including syngas production and other value-added chemicals.
Project description:With the need for more stable and active metal catalysts for dry reforming of methane, in situ grown nanoparticles using exsolution are a promising approach. However, in conventional exsolution, most nanoparticles remain underneath the surface because of the sluggish diffusion rate of cations. Here, we report the atomic layer deposition (ALD)-combined topotactic exsolution on La0.6Sr0.2Ti0.85Ni0.15O3-? toward developing active and durable catalysts. The uniform and quantitatively controlled layer of Fe via ALD facilitates the topotactic exsolution, increasing finely dispersed nanoparticles. The introduction of Fe2O3 yields the formation of Ni-Fe alloy owing to the spontaneous alloy formation energy of -0.43 eV, leading to an enhancement of the catalytic activity for dry methane reforming with a prolonged stability of 410 hours. Overall, the abundant alloy nanocatalysts via ALD mark an important step forward in the evolution of exsolution and its application to the field of energy utilization.
Project description:Methane reforming at low temperatures is of growing importance to mitigate the environmental impact of the production of synthesis gas, but it suffers from short catalyst lifetimes due to the severe deposition of carbon byproducts. Herein, we introduce a new class of topology-tailored catalyst in which tens-of-nanometer-thick fibrous networks of Ni metal and oxygen-deficient Y2O3 are entangled with each other to form a rooted structure, i.e., Ni#Y2O3. We demonstrate that the rooted Ni#Y2O3 catalyst stably promotes the carbon-dioxide reforming of methane at 723 K for over 1000 h, where the performance of traditional supported catalysts such as Ni/Y2O3 diminishes within 100 h due to the precluded mass transport by accumulated carbon byproducts. In situ TEM demonstrates that the supported Ni nanoparticles are readily detached from the support surface in the reaction atmosphere, and migrate around to result in widespread accumulation of the carbon byproducts. The long-term stable methane reforming over the rooted catalyst is ultimately attributed to the topologically immobilized Ni catalysis centre and the synergistic function of the oxygen-deficient Y2O3 matrix, which successfully inhibits the accumulation of byproducts.
Project description:The development of efficient catalysts with high activities and durabilities for use in the dry reforming of methane (DRM) is desirable but challenging. We report the development of a nanoporous nickel composite (nanoporous Ni/Y2O3) via a facile one-step dealloying technique, for use in the DRM. Focusing on the low-temperature DRM, our composite possessed remarkable activity and durability against coking compared with conventional particle-based Ni catalysts. This was attributed to the aluminum oxides present on the Ni surface, which suppress pore coarsening. In addition, the inert bundled Y2O3 nanowires are suitable for use as substrates for nanoporous Ni.
Project description:Dry reforming of methane is conducted in a catalyst packed-bed dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) reactor aiming to improve the reaction efficiency. The MgO- and CeO2-promoted Ni/?-Al2O3 catalyst is tested to carry out the reaction. An interesting observation is that Ni/MgO_Al2O3 integration provides ?35 and 13% conversion of CH4 and CO2, respectively. The highest syngas ratio of 0.94 is obtained with Ni/MgO_Al2O3, whereas the ratio is only 0.57 with Ni/CeO2_Al2O3 and 0.64 with bare DBD. In addition, Ni/CeO2_Al2O3 offers the highest selectivity (68%) of CO due to the oxygen buffer property of CeO2. Finally, the optimal acid/base property is highly desirable for the dry reforming reaction.
Project description:Dry reforming of methane can be used for suppressing the rapid growth of greenhouse gas emissions. However, its practical implementation generally requires high temperatures. In this study, we report an optimal catalyst for low-temperature dry reforming of methane with high carbon coking resistance synthesized from NiYAl alloy. A facile two-step process consisting of preferential oxidation and leaching was utilized to produce structurally robust nanoporous Ni metal and Y oxides from NiYAl4. The catalyst exhibited an optimal carbon balance (0.96) close to the ideal value of 1.0, indicating the optimized dry reforming pathway. This work proposes a facile route of the structural control of active metal/oxide sites for realizing highly active catalysts with long-term durability.
Project description:Closing the anthropogenic carbon cycle is one important strategy to combat climate change, and requires the chemistry to effectively combine CO2 capture with its conversion. Here, we propose a novel in situ CO2 utilization concept, calcium-looping reforming of methane, to realize the capture and conversion of CO2 in one integrated chemical process. This process couples the calcium-looping CO2 capture and the CH4 dry reforming reactions in the CaO-Ni bifunctional sorbent-catalyst, where the CO2 captured by CaO is reduced in situ by CH4 to CO, a reaction catalyzed by catalyzed by the adjacent metallic Ni. The process coupling scheme exhibits excellent decarbonation kinetics by exploiting Le Chatelier's principle to shift reaction equilibrium through continuous conversion of CO2, and results in an energy consumption 22% lower than that of conventional CH4 dry reforming for CO2 utilization. The proposed CO2 utilization concept offers a promising option to recycle carbon directly at large CO2 stationary sources in an energy-efficient manner.
Project description:Carbon moieties on late transition metals are regarded as poisoning agents in heterogeneous catalysis. Recent studies show the promoting catalytic role of subsurface C atoms in Pd surfaces and their existence in Ni and Pt surfaces. Here energetic and kinetic evidence obtained by accurate simulations on surface and nanoparticle models shows that such subsurface C species are a general issue to consider even in coinage noble-metal systems. Subsurface C is the most stable situation in densely packed (111) surfaces of Cu and Ag, with sinking barriers low enough to be overcome at catalytic working temperatures. Low-coordinated sites at nanoparticle edges and corners further stabilize them, even in Au, with negligible subsurface sinking barriers. The malleability of low-coordinated sites is key in the subsurface C accommodation. The incorporation of C species decreases the electron density of the surrounding metal atoms, thus affecting their chemical and catalytic activity.
Project description:Herein, we report the synthesis of a ?-Al2O3-supported NiCo catalyst for dry methane reforming (DMR) and study the catalyst using in situ scanning transmission X-ray microscopy (STXM) during the reduction (activation step) and under reaction conditions. During the reduction process, the NiCo alloy particles undergo elemental segregation with Co migrating toward the center of the catalyst particles and Ni migrating to the outer surfaces. Under DMR conditions, the segregated structure is maintained, thus hinting at the importance of this structure to optimal catalytic functions. Finally, the formation of Ni-rich branches on the surface of the particles is observed during DMR, suggesting that the loss of Ni from the outer shell may play a role in the reduced stability and hence catalyst deactivation. These findings provide insights into the morphological and electronic structural changes that occur in a NiCo-based catalyst during DMR. Further, this study emphasizes the need to study catalysts under operating conditions in order to elucidate material dynamics during the reaction.