A ruthenium-based catalyst with highly active, flat surfaces outperforms metal-based competitors

ScienceDaily | 7/2/2018 | Staff
bungienet (Posted by) Level 3
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A study led by researchers at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) has shown that nanoscale changes in surface structure can vastly improve the performance of metal catalysts used in the production of primary amines, an important class of compounds in the chemical industry.

The researchers developed a ruthenium-based catalyst composed of a large number of atomically active facets on their flat surfaces.

Catalysts - Catalyst - Surface - Structure - Turnover

Compared to conventional metal-supported catalysts, the new catalyst, with its highly active surface structure, achieved an overwhelmingly high catalytic turnover.

The study involved comparing how well different kinds of metal catalysts could convert biomass-derived furfural to furfurylamine. This served as a model reaction for reductive amination, the main process used to yield primary amines.

Catalyst - Turnover - Frequency - Hour - Figure

The new catalyst exhibited a turnover frequency of 1850 per hour. This figure represents a six-fold increase in efficiency over a metal-supported catalyst (RU/NB2O5) developed previously by some of the same team members, including Michikazu Hara and Keigo Kamata at Tokyo Tech's Institute of Innovative Research.

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