Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New way to design metal nanoparticle catalysts

Date:
February 26, 2011
Source:
Northwestern University
Summary:
Researchers have discovered a new strategy for fabricating metal nanoparticles in catalysts that promises to enhance the selectivity and yield for a wide range of structure-sensitive catalytic reactions.

Tiny metal nanoparticles are used as catalysts in many reactions, from refining chemicals to producing polymers and biofuels. How well these nanoparticles perform as catalysts for these reactions depend on which of their crystal faces are exposed.

But previous attempts to design these nanoparticles by changing their shape have failed because the structures are unstable and will revert back to their equilibrium shape.

Now, researchers at Northwestern University's Institute for Catalysis in Energy Processing have discovered a new strategy for fabricating metal nanoparticles in catalysts that promises to enhance the selectivity and yield for a wide range of structure-sensitive catalytic reactions. The team, led by Laurence D. Marks, professor of materials science and engineering at the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science, discovered that they could design nanoparticles by designing the particle's support structure.

"Instead of trying to engineer the nanoparticles, we've engineered the substrate that the nanoparticle sits on," Marks said. "That changes what faces are exposed." Their results were published in February in the journal Nano Letters.

This solution was a bit of a discovery: the team created the nanoparticle samples, discovered that they didn't change their shape (as the laws of thermodynamics caused previously designed nanoparticles to do), then set out figuring how it worked. It turns out that epitaxy -- the relationship between the position of the atoms in the nanoparticle and the position of the atoms on the substrate -- was more important to design than previously thought.

The team is currently testing the nanoparticles in a catalytic reactor, and early results look promising, Marks says. The nanoparticles appear to be stable enough to survive the rigors of long-term use as catalysts.

"It opens the door to designing better catalysts," Marks said. "This method could be used with a variety of different metal nanoparticles. It's a new strategy, and it could have a very big impact.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Northwestern University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. James A. Enterkin, Kenneth R. Poeppelmeier, Laurence D. Marks. Oriented Catalytic Platinum Nanoparticles on High Surface Area Strontium Titanate Nanocuboids. Nano Letters, 2011; 110202144738042 DOI: 10.1021/nl104263j

Cite This Page:

Northwestern University. "New way to design metal nanoparticle catalysts." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 February 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110222140554.htm>.
Northwestern University. (2011, February 26). New way to design metal nanoparticle catalysts. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110222140554.htm
Northwestern University. "New way to design metal nanoparticle catalysts." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110222140554.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

AP (July 30, 2014) British officials said on Wednesday that driverless cars will be tested on roads in as many as three cities in a trial program set to begin in January. Officials said the tests will last up to three years. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

AP (July 30, 2014) A ruptured 93-year-old water main left the UCLA campus awash in 8 million gallons of water in the middle of California's worst drought in decades. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow

Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow

AP (July 30, 2014) Smartphone powered paper airplane that was popular on crowdfunding website KickStarter makes its debut at Wisconsin airshow (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.K. To Allow Driverless Cars On Public Roads

U.K. To Allow Driverless Cars On Public Roads

Newsy (July 30, 2014) Driverless cars could soon become a staple on U.K. city streets, as they're set to be introduced to a few cities in 2015. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins