Public Release: 

A new synthesis route for alternative catalysts of noble metals

Tohoku University

IMAGE

IMAGE: Synthesis schemes of (a) conventional carbonaceous catalysts and (b) this work for ordered carbonaceous frameworks. view more 

Credit: Hirotomo Nishihara

Researchers have developed a new synthesis route for alternative catalysts of noble metals for versatile chemical reactions that could help address environmental concerns.

Noble metals such as platinum are useful as catalysts for versatile chemical reactions including fuel cell vehicles and reduction of CO2 emission. However, they are too costly to be used for these purposes.

As inexpensive alternatives, organic-based catalysts and carbonaceous catalysts were explored, but were ultimately found to be impractical. This was because organic-based catalysts tend to be active but unstable, while carbonaceous catalysts are stable but less active.

In this work, researchers believe they have found a solution by developing a new synthesis route for intermediate materials of organic-based catalysts and carbonaceous catalysts.

While conventional carbonaceous catalysts have amorphous carbonaceous structures that cause a decline in catalytic activities (Fig. 1a), the new synthesis route enables the formation of carbonaceous catalysts with controlled chemical structures like organic-based catalysts (Fig. 1b). This synthesis route is capable of developing alternative catalysts of noble metals for many eco-friendly technologies such as fuel cell vehicles, hydrogen generation from water and CO2 reduction.

###

This work was done through the Five-Star Alliance research program of the Network Joint Research Centre for Materials and Devices.

Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.