Supported liquid metal catalysts – a new generation of reaction accelerators

13.09.2017, 11:12 | Wissenschaft | Autor: | Jetzt kommentieren


Catalysts are agents that initiate chemical reactions, speed them up or significantly increase the yield of the desired product. New and improved catalysts are thus considered the key to creating more sustainable and efficient production processes in the chemical industry. In a joint research project, five professors at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) and their teams have recently discovered how to bypass the known drawbacks of the technical catalysts that are currently in use by means of a new material concept that makes the creation of significantly more efficient catalysts possible.

This new generation of catalysts employs liquid drops of metal alloy attached to porous carriers that are brought into contact with the gaseous reactants. The microscopically small drops of alloy are fluid because they contain a high proportion of gallium, an element with a very low melting point. At the same time, this high concentration of gallium ensures that the atoms of the dissolved secondary metal components are thoroughly dispersed: the individual metal atoms in solution within the gallium are responsible for the catalytic effect. The researchers have published their findings in the leading specialist journal Nature Chemistry (DOI: 10.1038/NCHEM.2822).

Supported liquid catalysts

Over the past decade, researchers at FAU have repeatedly been able to demonstrate their international preeminence in the field of catalyst material innovations. Catalytic Materials is consequently a key research area within the Cluster of Excellence Engineering of Advanced Materials (EAM) at FAU. Supported liquid catalysts have often been the focal point of interest for the FAU-based researchers. These combine the benefits of customised molecular reaction accelerators with the advantage that they can be more readily separated from the product. In the concept outlined in the article published in Nature Chemistry, the use of metal alloys in supported liquid catalysts is described for the first time. In addition, it is also the first time that catalytic activity has been ascribed to liquid metal alloys.
Moreover, the initially tested material combinations have been found to significantly outperform standard technical catalysts that have taken years to develop. ‘It is particularly interesting that there is little to no deactivation of the supported metal complexes when carbon deposits form on them,’ says Professor Peter Wasserscheid. ‘It is deposits such as this that are the main cause of the deactivation of catalysts used for catalytic conversion at high temperatures by the petrochemical industry.’ The researchers were able to demonstrate this important effect in the case of the dehydration of butane. The special structural nature of this new class of materials was discovered by four groups working in collaboration: microscopic analysis was undertaken by the team under Wolfgang Peukert, the teams of Hans-Peter Steinrück and Christian Papp completed the spectrographic analysis, Rainer Hock’s team was responsible for radiographic analysis while the corresponding calculations were undertaken by Andreas Görling and his colleagues.

Gallium: the secret of success

The element gallium plays a central role in this new class of materials. Gallium melts at around 30°C and has a boiling point of 2400°C. It possesses the unique ability of being able to dissolve almost all other metals. When it is exposed to air, ultra-thin layers of oxide form on the surface of gallium; however, these are reconverted back to the original element under the conditions obtained during many catalytic processes. To date, the FAU-based researchers have achieved their spectacular results using palladium dissolved in gallium. They next intend to conduct further research to find out whether these extraordinary effects can also be obtained using non-precious metals dissolved in gallium and also whether the effects can be reproduced in connection with other chemical reactions. ‘Our calculations lead us to assume that single metal atoms dissolved in gallium can display totally different reactive characteristics from those that the same metal in crystalline form will usually exhibit,’ explains Andreas Görling. ‘This is why we are so fascinated by this new class of catalytic materials. We are convinced that with the help of supported alloy complexes, highly efficient and very cost-effective catalysts can be developed that have considerable potential with regard to industrial applications,’ adds Hans-Peter Steinrück.

The Cluster of Excellence EAM

The Cluster of Excellence EAM has been active in the research and development of new materials since 2007. The cluster which has 200 staff working across nine disciplines, will have received almost €73 million in funding to the end of 2017. EAM has achieved major advances in the development of new high-performance materials in the fields of catalysis, lightweight construction, nano-electronics, optics and photonics.

Further information:
Prof. Dr. Peter Wasserscheid
Tel.: +49 9131 85 27420
peter.wasserscheid@fau.de

Quelle: idw


Weitere Nachrichten zum Thema
  • BildEuro*MBA again certified by AMBA (01.11.2012, 11:10)
    Online-MBA Receives International Accreditation AgainThe Euro*MBA, an innovative two-year MBA program for executives, which is based on blended learning was awarded again the international quality seal of the organization AMBA (Association of...
  • BildDevelopment of New Medicines for Memory Impairment (17.01.2012, 12:10)
    Using a novel approach, research scientists of the University of Basel will develop drugs for memory impairment together with the Lausanne based biopharmaceutical company AC Immune. This project is supported by the Commission for Technology and...
  • BildNeuerscheinung zum Thema Fremdsprachenunterricht (02.03.2011, 16:00)
    Prof. Dr. Andreas Müller-Hartmann von der PH Heidelberg und Prof. Dr. Marita Schocker-v. Ditfurth (PH Freiburg) haben ein neues Buch zum Thema Fremdsprachenunterricht veröffentlicht - "Teaching English: Task-Supported Language Learning".Das in der...
  • BildProfessor Tom Gross zum Repräsentanten Deutschlands im Weltdachverband für Informatik gewählt (09.03.2010, 13:00)
    Der Weimarer Medieninformatik-Experte ist zukünftig Deutschlands Stimme für den Bereich Mensch-Computer-Interaktion.Die International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP) ist der weltweite Dachverband für Informatik. Beim Frühjahrstreffen...
  • BildGerman-Russian Cooperation in Laser Technology Successful (27.10.2009, 10:00)
    Equipment for a water treatment plant in Russia has been built with the help of German laser technique. This is an example of the successful cooperation in a project between Germany and Russia. In Russia there are five Laser Innovation...
  • BildModern Glass Decor - Easy and Eco-Friendly With Laser Technology (21.10.2009, 15:00)
    The goal of a new research project between the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the mechanical engineering company CERION GmbH is to use the laser for structuring and ornamenting large glass areas.In the near future laser technology can be...
  • BildRussian-German Laser Network at the Photonics Fair in Moscow (11.03.2009, 15:00)
    The "Network of Russian-German Laser Centers" will be exhibiting at the fair "Photonics. World of Lasers and Optics" from April 20th to 23rd, 2009 in Moscow. The five members of the expert network will present their services in the field of laser...
  • BildC-LAB Report "Using the PLASTIC Middleware for the Creation of Context-aware, Adaptive Mobile Servic (12.01.2009, 11:00)
    Affordable and highly available ubiquitous communcation systems nowadays facilitate the broad deployment of mobile services. The development of such services by utilising advanced (so called Beyond 3G) networks was targeted by the PLASTIC project...
  • BildMyth about "dirty old men" supported by science (04.12.2008, 11:00)
    Middle-aged men want younger women, often touting their intelligence and their high income. This is shown in research at Gothenburg University and Oxford University that studied 400 lonely hearts ads to see how men and women choose...
  • BildWISIONS looks for new visions - 3rd Call launched for Sustainable Energy Project Support (SEPS) (12.05.2006, 11:00)
    WISIONS - an initiative of the Wuppertal Institute - is supporting innovative sustainable energy projects since two years. The aim is to spread knowledge on successful implemented good-practices (in PREP) as well as direct support to implement...

Ähnliche Themen in den JuraForen


Kommentar schreiben

48 - S/ech s =

Bisherige Kommentare zur Nachricht (0)

(Keine Kommentare vorhanden)



Fragen Sie einen Anwalt!
Anwälte sind gerade online.
Schnelle Antwort auf Ihre Rechtsfrage.

JuraForum-Newsletter

Kostenlose aktuelle Urteile und Rechtstipps per E-Mail:

Top 10 Orte in der Anwaltssuche

JuraForum-Suche

Durchsuchen Sie hier JuraForum.de nach bestimmten Begriffen:

© 2003-2017 JuraForum.de — Alle Rechte vorbehalten. Keine Vervielfältigung, Verbreitung oder Nutzung für kommerzielle Zwecke.