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Aerogel-coated metal nanoparticle colloids as novel entities for the synthesis of defined supported metal catalysts

Yu, K.M.K., Yeung, C.M.Y., Thompsett, D. and Tsang, S.C. (2003) Aerogel-coated metal nanoparticle colloids as novel entities for the synthesis of defined supported metal catalysts. Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 107 (19). pp. 4515-4526. ISSN 1520-6106

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1021/jp0275239


Nanometer metal particles of tailored size (3-5 nm) and composition prepared via inverse microemulsion were encapsulated by ultrathin coatings (<2.5 nm) of inorganic porous aerogels covered with surface -OH groups. These composite materials formed metastable colloids in solvent(s), and the organic surfactant molecules were subsequently removed without leading to aggregation (the ethanolic colloid solution was shown to be stable against flocculation for at least weeks). We demonstrate that the totally inorganic-based composite colloids, after the removal of surfactant, can be anchored to conventional solid supports (gamma-alumina, carbons) upon mixing. Application of a high temperature resulted in the formation of strong covalent linkages between the colloids and the support because of the condensation of surface groups at the interface. Detailed characterizations (X-ray diffraction (XRD), pore analysis, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), CO chemisorption) and catalytic testing (butane combustion) showed that there was no significant metal aggregation from the fine metal particles individually coated with porous aerogel oxide. Most of these metal sites on the coated nanoparticles with and without support are fully accessible by small molecules hence giving extremely active metal catalysts. Thus, the product and technology described may be suitable to synthesize these precursor entities of defined metal sizes (as inks) for wash coat/impregnation applications in catalysis. The advantages of developing inorganic nanocomposite chemical precursors are also discussed.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy > Department of Chemistry
ID Code:11724

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