Evolution of Structure and Chemistry of Bimetallic Nanoparticle Catalysts under Reaction Conditions

Tao F., Grass M. E. , Zhang Y., Butcher D. R. , Aksoy F., Aloni S., ...More

JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN CHEMICAL SOCIETY, vol.132, no.25, pp.8697-8703, 2010 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 132 Issue: 25
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • Doi Number: 10.1021/ja101502t
  • Page Numbers: pp.8697-8703


Three series of bimetallic nanoparticle catalysts (RhxPd1-x, RhxPt1-x, and PdxPt1-x, x=0.2, 0.5, 0.8) were synthesized using one-step colloidal chemistry. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) depth profiles using different X-ray energies and scanning transmission electron microscopy showed that the as-synthesized RhxPd1-x and PdxPt1-x nanoparticles have a core-shell structure whereas the RhxPt1-x alloys are more homogeneous in structure. The evolution of their structures and chemistry under oxidizing and reducing conditions was studied with ambient-pressure XPS (AP-XPS) in the Torr pressure range. The RhxPd1-x and RhxPt1-x nanoparticles undergo reversible changes of surface composition and chemical state when the reactant gases change from oxidizing (NO or O-2 at 300 degrees C) to reducing (H-2 or CO at 300 degrees C) or catalytic (mixture of NO and CO at 300 degrees C). In contrast, no significant change in the distribution of the Pd and Pt atoms in the PdxPt1-x nanoparticles was observed. The difference in restructuring behavior under these reaction conditions in the three series of bimetallic nanoparticle catalysts is correlated with the surface free energy of the metals and the heat of formation of the metallic oxides. The observation of structural evolution of bimetallic nanoparticles under different reaction conditions suggests the importance of in situ studies of surface structures of nanoparticle catalysts.