A new synthesis route for alternative catalysts of noble metals has been developed by Researchers for multipurpose chemical reactions that could help deal with environmental concerns.
Despite being constructive as catalysts for versatile chemical reactions including the reduction of CO2 emission and fuel cell vehicles, noble metals such as platinum are too costly to be employed for these purposes.
As economical alternatives, carbonaceous catalysts and organic-based catalysts were explored, but these were finally found to be impractical. This was because carbonaceous catalysts are stable but less active, while organic-based catalysts are likely to be active but unstable. In this study, the Researchers think they have developed the right solution by developing a novel synthesis route for intermediate materials of carbonaceous catalysts and organic-based catalysts.
The new synthesis route allows the formation of carbonaceous catalysts with controlled chemical structures similar to organic-based catalysts, while traditional carbonaceous catalysts possess amorphous carbonaceous structures that reduce catalytic activities. Using this new synthesis route, alternative catalysts of noble metals can be developed for many eco-friendly technologies such as CO2 reduction, hydrogen generation from water and fuel cell vehicles.
The work was performed through the Five-Star Alliance research program of the Network Joint Research Centre for Materials and Devices.