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Catalysts, Volume 9, Issue 7 (July 2019)

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Cover Story (view full-size image) The cover illustrates a metal–semiconductor/polyaniline nanocomposite with spectacular catalytic [...] Read more.
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Open AccessReview
Catalysis inside Supramolecular Capsules: Recent Developments
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 630; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070630
Received: 5 July 2019 / Revised: 18 July 2019 / Accepted: 19 July 2019 / Published: 23 July 2019
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Abstract
In the last decades, supramolecular chemists have developed new molecular receptors able to include a wide range of guests. In addition, they have designed synthetic hosts able to form capsules having an internal volume of thousands of Å3. This inner space [...] Read more.
In the last decades, supramolecular chemists have developed new molecular receptors able to include a wide range of guests. In addition, they have designed synthetic hosts able to form capsules having an internal volume of thousands of Å3. This inner space shows different features from the bulk solution. In particular, this environment has recently been employed to perform chemical reactions, obtaining reaction products different from the “normal” conditions. These supramolecular capsules act as nanoreactors, catalyzing many chemical transformations. This review collects the recent developments (since 2015) in this field, focusing on supramolecular capsules based on resorcinarene hexameric capsules and metal-cage capsules. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanocatalysts: Organic/Inorganic Nanosystems as Biomimetic Catalysts)
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Open AccessArticle
Identification and Characterization of New Laccase Biocatalysts from Pseudomonas Species Suitable for Degradation of Synthetic Textile Dyes
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 629; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070629
Received: 3 July 2019 / Revised: 15 July 2019 / Accepted: 17 July 2019 / Published: 23 July 2019
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Abstract
Laccases are multicopper-oxidases with variety of biotechnological applications. While predominantly used, fungal laccases have limitations such as narrow pH and temperature range and their production via heterologous protein expression is more complex due to posttranslational modifications. In comparison, bacterial enzymes, including laccases, usually [...] Read more.
Laccases are multicopper-oxidases with variety of biotechnological applications. While predominantly used, fungal laccases have limitations such as narrow pH and temperature range and their production via heterologous protein expression is more complex due to posttranslational modifications. In comparison, bacterial enzymes, including laccases, usually possess higher thermal and pH stability, and are more suitable for expression and genetic manipulations in bacterial expression hosts. Therefore, the aim of this study was to identify, recombinantly express, and characterize novel laccases from Pseudomonas spp. A combination of approaches including DNA sequence analysis, N-terminal protein sequencing, and genome sequencing data analysis for laccase amplification, cloning, and overexpression have been used. Four active recombinant laccases were obtained, one each from P. putida KT2440 and P. putida CA-3, and two from P. putida F6. The new laccases exhibited broad temperature and pH range and high thermal stability, as well as the potential to degrade selection of synthetic textile dyes. The best performing laccase was CopA from P. putida F6 which degraded five out of seven tested dyes, including Amido Black 10B, Brom Cresol Purple, Evans Blue, Reactive Black 5, and Remazol Brilliant Blue. This work highlighted species of Pseudomonas genus as still being good sources of biocatalytically relevant enzymes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Biocatalysis: From Remediation to Waste Valorization)
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Open AccessArticle
Hierarchical H-MOR Zeolite Supported Vanadium Oxide for Dimethyl Ether Direct Oxidation
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 628; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070628
Received: 27 June 2019 / Revised: 13 July 2019 / Accepted: 15 July 2019 / Published: 23 July 2019
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Abstract
A series of hierarchical H-MOR zeolites with different pore structure were designed and synthesized by alkaline and alkaline-acid post-synthesis methods. The catalytic performance of hierarchical H-MOR zeolite-supported vanadium oxide was investigated for dimethyl ether (DME) direct oxidation. Different pore structures apparently affect the [...] Read more.
A series of hierarchical H-MOR zeolites with different pore structure were designed and synthesized by alkaline and alkaline-acid post-synthesis methods. The catalytic performance of hierarchical H-MOR zeolite-supported vanadium oxide was investigated for dimethyl ether (DME) direct oxidation. Different pore structures apparently affect the distribution of oxidation product distribution, especially the selectivity of DMMx and CO. The formation of mesopores for 10%V2O5/deAlmm-H-MOR markedly improved the DMMx selectivity up to 78.2% from 60.0%, and more notably, CO selectivity dropped to zero compared to that of 10%V2O5/H-MOR. The hierarchical H-MOR zeolites were confirmed to be successfully prepared by the post-synthesis method. Due to the presence of mesoporous structure, the dispersion of vanadium oxide species was enhanced, which could improve the reducibility of vanadium oxide species and also make better contact with the acid sites of zeolite to exert the synergistic effect of the bifunctional active sites. More importantly, the creation of mesopores was proved to be favorable to the mass transfer of intermediate and products to avoid the occurrence of secondary reaction, which could effectively suppress the formation of by-products. This work is helpful for us to provide a novel insight to design the catalyst with suitable pore structure to effectively synthesize diesel fuel additives from DME direct oxidation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Catalytic Materials)
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Open AccessArticle
Light-Induced Reactions of Chlorpromazine in the Presence of a Heterogeneous Photocatalyst: Formation of a Long-Lasting Sulfoxide
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 627; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070627
Received: 1 July 2019 / Revised: 16 July 2019 / Accepted: 17 July 2019 / Published: 22 July 2019
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Abstract
A commercial carbon-modified titanium dioxide, KRONOClean 7000, was applied as a UV(A) and visible-light active photocatalyst to investigate the conversion of the antipsychotic pharmaceutical chlorpromazine in aqueous phase employing two monochromatic light sources emitting at wavelengths of 365 and 455 nm. Photocatalytic and [...] Read more.
A commercial carbon-modified titanium dioxide, KRONOClean 7000, was applied as a UV(A) and visible-light active photocatalyst to investigate the conversion of the antipsychotic pharmaceutical chlorpromazine in aqueous phase employing two monochromatic light sources emitting at wavelengths of 365 and 455 nm. Photocatalytic and photolytic conversion of chlorpromazine under both anaerobic and aerobic conditions was analyzed using a HPLC-MS technique. Depending on the irradiation wavelength and presence of oxygen, varying conversion rates and intermediates revealing different reaction pathways were observed. Upon visible light irradiation under aerobic conditions, chlorpromazine was only converted in the presence of the photocatalyst. No photocatalytic conversion of this compound under anaerobic conditions upon visible light irradiation was observed. Upon UV(A) irradiation, chlorpromazine was successfully converted into its metabolites in both presence and absence of the photocatalyst. Most importantly, chlorpromazine sulfoxide, a very persistent metabolite of chlorpromazine, was produced throughout the photolytic and photocatalytic conversions of chlorpromazine under aerobic conditions. Chlorpromazine sulfoxide was found to be highly stable under visible light irradiation even in the presence of the photocatalyst. Heterogeneous photocatalysis under UV(A) irradiation resulted in a slow decrease of the sulfoxide concentration, however, the required irradiation time for its complete removal was found to be much longer compared to the removal of chlorpromazine at the same initial concentration. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Electromagnetic Effective Medium Modelling of Composites with Metal-Semiconductor Core-Shell Type Inclusions
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 626; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070626
Received: 13 June 2019 / Revised: 17 July 2019 / Accepted: 18 July 2019 / Published: 22 July 2019
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Abstract
The possibility of using light to drive chemical reactions has highlighted the role of photocatalysis as a key tool to address the environmental and energy issues faced by today’s society. Plasmonic photocatalysis, proposed to circumvent some of the problems of conventional semiconductor catalysis, [...] Read more.
The possibility of using light to drive chemical reactions has highlighted the role of photocatalysis as a key tool to address the environmental and energy issues faced by today’s society. Plasmonic photocatalysis, proposed to circumvent some of the problems of conventional semiconductor catalysis, uses hetero-nanostructures composed by plasmonic metals and semiconductors as catalysts. Metal-semiconductor core-shell nanoparticles present advantages (i.e., protecting the metal and enlarging the active sites) with respect to other hetero-nanostructures proposed for plasmonic photocatalysis applications. In order to maximize light absorption in the catalyst, it is critical to accurately model the reflectance/absorptance/transmittance of composites and colloids with metal-semiconductor core-shell nanoparticle inclusions. Here, we present a new method for calculating the effective dielectric function of metal-semiconductor core-shell nanoparticles and its comparison with existing theories showing clear advantages. Particularly, this new method has shown the best performance in the prediction of the spectral position of the localized plasmonic resonances, a key parameter in the design of efficient photocatalysts. This new approach can be considered as a useful tool for designing coated particles with desired plasmonic properties and engineering the effective permittivity of composites with core-shell type inclusions which are used in photocatalysis and solar energy harvesting applications. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Pyrolysis Kinetics of Hydrochars Produced from Brewer’s Spent Grains
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 625; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070625
Received: 3 July 2019 / Revised: 15 July 2019 / Accepted: 17 July 2019 / Published: 22 July 2019
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Abstract
The current market situation shows that large quantities of the brewer’s spent grains (BSG)—the leftovers from the beer productions—are not fully utilized as cattle feed. The untapped BSG is a promising feedstock for cheap and environmentally friendly production of carbonaceous materials in thermochemical [...] Read more.
The current market situation shows that large quantities of the brewer’s spent grains (BSG)—the leftovers from the beer productions—are not fully utilized as cattle feed. The untapped BSG is a promising feedstock for cheap and environmentally friendly production of carbonaceous materials in thermochemical processes like hydrothermal carbonization (HTC) or pyrolysis. The use of a singular process results in the production of inappropriate material (HTC) or insufficient economic feasibility (pyrolysis), which hinders their application on a larger scale. The coupling of both processes can create synergies and allow the mentioned obstacles to be overcome. To investigate the possibility of coupling both processes, we analyzed the thermal degradation of raw BSG and BSG-derived hydrochars and assessed the solid material yield from the singular as well as the coupled processes. This publication reports the non-isothermal kinetic parameters of pyrolytic degradation of BSG and derived hydrochars produced in three different conditions (temperature-retention time). It also contains a summary of their pyrolytic char yield at four different temperatures. The obtained KAS (Kissinger–Akahira–Sunose) average activation energy was 285, 147, 170, and 188 kJ mol−1 for BSG, HTC-180-4, HTC-220-2, and HTC-220-4, respectively. The pyrochar yield for all hydrochar cases was significantly higher than for BSG, and it increased with the severity of the HTC’s conditions. The results reveal synergies resulting from coupling both processes, both in the yield and the reduction of the thermal load of the conversion process. According to these promising results, the coupling of both conversion processes can be beneficial. Nevertheless, drying and overall energy efficiency, as well as larger scale assessment, still need to be conducted to fully confirm the concept. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Catalysis in Lignocellulosic Biomass Conversion)
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Open AccessArticle
Facile Synthesis of Heterojunctioned ZnO/Bi2S3 Nanocomposites for Enhanced Photocatalytic Reduction of Aqueous Cr(VI) under Visible-Light Irradiation
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 624; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070624
Received: 18 June 2019 / Revised: 9 July 2019 / Accepted: 9 July 2019 / Published: 21 July 2019
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Abstract
Heterojunctioned ZnO/Bi2S3 nanocomposites were prepared via a facile solvothermal method. The obtained photocatalysts were characterized by X-ray powder diffraction (XRD), Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), High resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), UV-Vis diffuse reflectance spectroscopy (DRS), and [...] Read more.
Heterojunctioned ZnO/Bi2S3 nanocomposites were prepared via a facile solvothermal method. The obtained photocatalysts were characterized by X-ray powder diffraction (XRD), Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), High resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), UV-Vis diffuse reflectance spectroscopy (DRS), and Photoelectrochemical and Photoluminescence spectroscopy (PL), respectively. The results showed that ZnO/Bi2S3 composites exhibited the sandwiched-like structure, where ZnO nanoparticles were randomly embedded between Bi2S3 nanoflakes. The performance of photocatalytic Cr(VI) reduction under visible light indicated that ZnO/Bi2S3 composites exhibited high-efficiency photocatalytic activity in comparison with either Bi2S3 or ZnO. The 5%-ZnO/Bi2S3 photocatalyst removed 96% of Cr(VI) within 120 min at 20 mg/L initial concentration of Cr(VI). The enhanced performance of ZnO/Bi2S3 photocatalysts could be ascribed to the increased light harvesting and the effective separation and transfer of the photogenerated charge carriers across the heterojunction interface of the ZnO/Bi2S3 composite. This work could pave the way for the design of new hetero-structured materials and has great potential in environmental remediation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photocatalytic Nanocomposite Materials)
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Open AccessArticle
Efficient Photocatalytic Hydrogen Peroxide Production over TiO2 Passivated by SnO2
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 623; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070623
Received: 24 June 2019 / Revised: 9 July 2019 / Accepted: 15 July 2019 / Published: 21 July 2019
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Abstract
Photocatalysis provides an attractive strategy for synthesizing H2O2 at ambient condition. However, the photocatalytic synthesis of H2O2 is still limited due to the inefficiency of photocatalysts and decomposition of H2O2 during formation. Here, we [...] Read more.
Photocatalysis provides an attractive strategy for synthesizing H2O2 at ambient condition. However, the photocatalytic synthesis of H2O2 is still limited due to the inefficiency of photocatalysts and decomposition of H2O2 during formation. Here, we report SnO2-TiO2 heterojunction photocatalysts for synthesizing H2O2 directly in aqueous solution. The SnO2 passivation suppresses the complexation and decomposition of H2O2 on TiO2. In addition, loading of Au cocatalyst on SnO2-TiO2 heterojunction further improves the production of H2O2. The in situ electron spin resonance study revealed that the formation of H2O2 is a stepwise single electron oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) for Au and SnO2 modified TiO2 photocatalysts. We demonstrate that it is feasible to enhance H2O2 formation and suppress H2O2 decomposition by surface passivation of the H2O2-decomposition-sensitive photocatalysts. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Dextran Aldehyde in Biocatalysis: More Than a Mere Immobilization System
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 622; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070622
Received: 28 June 2019 / Revised: 15 July 2019 / Accepted: 16 July 2019 / Published: 21 July 2019
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Abstract
Dextran aldehyde (dexOx), resulting from the periodate oxidative cleavage of 1,2-diol moiety inside dextran, is a polymer that is very useful in many areas, including as a macromolecular carrier for drug delivery and other biomedical applications. In particular, it has been widely used [...] Read more.
Dextran aldehyde (dexOx), resulting from the periodate oxidative cleavage of 1,2-diol moiety inside dextran, is a polymer that is very useful in many areas, including as a macromolecular carrier for drug delivery and other biomedical applications. In particular, it has been widely used for chemical engineering of enzymes, with the aim of designing better biocatalysts that possess improved catalytic properties, making them more stable and/or active for different catalytic reactions. This polymer possesses a very flexible hydrophilic structure, which becomes inert after chemical reduction; therefore, dexOx comes to be highly versatile in a biocatalyst design. This paper presents an overview of the multiple applications of dexOx in applied biocatalysis, e.g., to modulate the adsorption of biomolecules on carrier surfaces in affinity chromatography and biosensors design, to serve as a spacer arm between a ligand and the support in biomacromolecule immobilization procedures or to generate artificial microenvironments around the enzyme molecules or to stabilize multimeric enzymes by intersubunit crosslinking, among many other applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Immobilization of Enzymes)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
The Effect of CeO2 Preparation Method on the Carbon Pathways in the Dry Reforming of Methane on Ni/CeO2 Studied by Transient Techniques
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 621; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070621
Received: 30 May 2019 / Revised: 12 July 2019 / Accepted: 18 July 2019 / Published: 21 July 2019
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Abstract
The present work discusses the effect of CeO2 synthesis method (thermal decomposition (TD), precipitation (PT), hydrothermal (HT), and sol-gel (SG)) on the carbon pathways of dry reforming of methane with carbon dioxide (DRM) applied at 750 °C over 5 wt% Ni/CeO2 [...] Read more.
The present work discusses the effect of CeO2 synthesis method (thermal decomposition (TD), precipitation (PT), hydrothermal (HT), and sol-gel (SG)) on the carbon pathways of dry reforming of methane with carbon dioxide (DRM) applied at 750 °C over 5 wt% Ni/CeO2. In particular, specific transient and isotopic experiments (use of 13CO, 13CO2, and 18O2) were designed and conducted in an attempt at providing insights about the effect of support’s preparation method on the concentration (mg gcat−1), reactivity towards oxygen, and transient evolution rates (μmol gcat−1 s−1) of the inactive carbon formed under (i) CH4/He (methane decomposition), (ii) CO/He (reverse Boudouard reaction), and (iii) the copresence of the two (CH4/CO/He, use of 13CO). Moreover, important information regarding the relative contribution of CH4 and CO2 activation routes towards carbon formation under DRM reaction conditions was derived by using isotopically labelled 13CO2 in the feed gas stream. Of interest was also the amount, and the transient rate, of carbon removal via the participation of support’s labile active oxygen species. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Immobilization of a Novel ESTBAS Esterase from Bacillus altitudinis onto an Epoxy Resin: Characterization and Regioselective Synthesis of Chloramphenicol Palmitate
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 620; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070620
Received: 19 May 2019 / Revised: 15 July 2019 / Accepted: 16 July 2019 / Published: 21 July 2019
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Abstract
Novel gene estBAS from Bacillus altitudinis, encoding a 216-amino acid esterase (EstBAS) with a signal peptide (SP), was expressed in Escherichia coli. EstBASΔSP showed the highest activity toward p-nitrophenyl hexanoate at 50 °C and pH [...] Read more.
Novel gene estBAS from Bacillus altitudinis, encoding a 216-amino acid esterase (EstBAS) with a signal peptide (SP), was expressed in Escherichia coli. EstBASΔSP showed the highest activity toward p-nitrophenyl hexanoate at 50 °C and pH 8.0 and had a half-life (T1/2) of 6 h at 50 °C. EstBASΔSP was immobilized onto a novel epoxy resin (Lx-105s) with a high loading of 96 mg/g. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy showed that EstBASΔSP was successfully immobilized onto Lx-105s. In addition, immobilization improved its enzymatic performance by widening the tolerable ranges of pH and temperature. The optimum temperature of immobilized EstBASΔSP (Lx-EstBASΔSP) was higher, 60 °C, and overall thermostability improved. T1/2 of Lx-EstBASΔSP and free EstBASΔSP at 60 °C was 105 and 28 min, respectively. Lx-EstBASΔSP was used as a biocatalyst to synthesize chloramphenicol palmitate by regioselective modification at the primary hydroxyl group. Conversion efficiency reached 94.7% at 0.15 M substrate concentration after 24 h. Lx-EstBASΔSP was stable and could be reused for seven cycles, after which it retained over 80% of the original activity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biocatalysts: Design and Application)
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Open AccessArticle
Removal of Bound PAH Residues in Contaminated Soils by Fenton Oxidation
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 619; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070619
Received: 7 April 2019 / Revised: 2 July 2019 / Accepted: 17 July 2019 / Published: 20 July 2019
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Abstract
The availability of bound residues of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), in reference to their parent compounds, can be enhanced by microbial activity and chemical reactions, which pose severe risks for the ecosystems encompassing contaminated soils. Considerable attention has been raised on how to [...] Read more.
The availability of bound residues of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), in reference to their parent compounds, can be enhanced by microbial activity and chemical reactions, which pose severe risks for the ecosystems encompassing contaminated soils. Considerable attention has been raised on how to remove these bound residues from PAH-contaminated soils. This paper provides a novel application of Fenton oxidation in the removal of bound residues of model PAHs, such as naphthalene (NAP), acenaphthene (ACP), fluorene (FLU) and anthracene (ANT), from naturally contaminated soils. The citric acid-enhanced Fenton treatment resulted in the degradation of bound PAH residues that followed pseudo-first-order kinetics, with rate constants within 4.22 × 10−2, 1.25 × 10−1 and 2.72 × 10−1 h−1 for NAP, FLU, and ANT, respectively. The reactivity of bound PAH residues showed a correlation with their ionization potential (IP) values. Moreover, the degradation rate of bound PAH residues was significantly correlated with H2O2-Fe2+ ratio (m/m) and H2O2 concentrations. The highest removal efficiencies of bound PAH residues was up to 89.5% with the treatment of chelating agent oxalic acid, which was demonstrated to be superior to other acids, such as citric acid and hydrochloric acid. This study provides valuable insight into the feasibility of citric acid-Fenton and oxalic acid-Fenton treatments in rehabilitating bound PAH residues in contaminated soils. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances on Sustainable Oxidative Catalysis)
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Open AccessArticle
Application of Microwave in Hydrogen Production from Methane Dry Reforming: Comparison Between the Conventional and Microwave-Assisted Catalytic Reforming on Improving the Energy Efficiency
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 618; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070618
Received: 22 June 2019 / Revised: 16 July 2019 / Accepted: 18 July 2019 / Published: 20 July 2019
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Abstract
The microwave-assisted dry reforming of methane over Ni and Ni–MgO catalysts supported on activated carbon (AC) was studied with respect to reducing reaction energy consumption. In order to optimize the reforming reaction using the microwave setup, an inclusive study was performed on the [...] Read more.
The microwave-assisted dry reforming of methane over Ni and Ni–MgO catalysts supported on activated carbon (AC) was studied with respect to reducing reaction energy consumption. In order to optimize the reforming reaction using the microwave setup, an inclusive study was performed on the effect of operating parameters, including the type of catalysts’ active metal and their concentration in the AC support, feed flow rate, and reaction temperature on the reaction conversion and H2/CO selectivity. The methane dry reforming was also carried out using conventional heating and the results were compared to those of microwave heating. The catalysts’ activity was increased under microwave heating and as a result, the feed conversion and hydrogen selectivity were enhanced in comparison to the conventional heating method. In addition, to improve the reactants’ conversion and products’ selectivity, the thermal analysis also clarified the crucial importance of microwave heating in enhancing the energy efficiency of the reaction compared to the conventional heating. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Catalysis for the Production of Sustainable Fuels and Chemicals)
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Open AccessArticle
Application of Response Surface Methodology for Ethanol Conversion into Hydrocarbons Using ZSM-5 Zeolites
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 617; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070617
Received: 24 May 2019 / Revised: 26 June 2019 / Accepted: 29 June 2019 / Published: 20 July 2019
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Abstract
The ethanol conversion into hydrocarbons (light olefins and aromatics) using alkali-treated HZSM-5 with different SiO2/Al2O3 ratios (23, 38, and 53) zeolites was evaluated. The desilicated SAR 38 zeolite exhibited significant growth on the external surface area (61–212 m [...] Read more.
The ethanol conversion into hydrocarbons (light olefins and aromatics) using alkali-treated HZSM-5 with different SiO2/Al2O3 ratios (23, 38, and 53) zeolites was evaluated. The desilicated SAR 38 zeolite exhibited significant growth on the external surface area (61–212 m2/g) and the mesopore volume (0.07–0.37 cm3/g) without significate reduction on XRD crystallinity (93%). All catalysts were active on the ethanol conversion into hydrocarbons. At the same set of variables, the alkali-treated HZSM-5 zeolites showed a better conversion and a high selectivity to C4–C9 hydrocarbons when compared to the parent microporous zeolites. Only the parent HZSM-5 zeolite (SAR 53) was chosen for the statistical study using the standard response surface methodology in combination with the central composite design. It was found that maximum BTEX (benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylenes) and minimum ethylene production were reached for the following conditions: temperature 450 °C, pressure 20 bar, and WHSV (weight hourly space velocity) 5 h−1. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
CoSe2 Clusters as Efficient Co-Catalyst Modified CdS Nanorod for Enhance Visible Light Photocatalytic H2 Evolution
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 616; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070616
Received: 7 June 2019 / Revised: 12 July 2019 / Accepted: 14 July 2019 / Published: 20 July 2019
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Abstract
CoSe2, as a kind of co-catalyst, would replace noble metals element to dope pure CdS. The CoSe2/CdS photocatalyst could be synthesized by simple physical mixing. With the introduction of CoSe2, especially 30% CoSe2/CdS, hydrogen production would [...] Read more.
CoSe2, as a kind of co-catalyst, would replace noble metals element to dope pure CdS. The CoSe2/CdS photocatalyst could be synthesized by simple physical mixing. With the introduction of CoSe2, especially 30% CoSe2/CdS, hydrogen production would be about 500 μmol within 5 h, five times that of pure CdS under the same conditions. The CoSe2/CdS photocatalyst could bear four cycles of hydrogen evolution and sustain the hydrogen production, with a minor decrease. In other words, the electron transition velocity would surge along with the introduction of CoSe2 particles. The CoSe2 could be deemed as the predator and exit of electrons to inspire the detachment of the hole-electron pairs and relieve the recombination of the hole-electron pairs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Porous Materials for Photocatalysis and Energy)
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Open AccessArticle
Bench-Scale Steam Reforming of Methane for Hydrogen Production
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 615; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070615
Received: 5 July 2019 / Revised: 15 July 2019 / Accepted: 17 July 2019 / Published: 20 July 2019
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Abstract
The effects of reaction parameters, including reaction temperature and space velocity, on hydrogen production via steam reforming of methane (SRM) were investigated using lab- and bench-scale reactors to identify critical factors for the design of large-scale processes. Based on thermodynamic and kinetic data [...] Read more.
The effects of reaction parameters, including reaction temperature and space velocity, on hydrogen production via steam reforming of methane (SRM) were investigated using lab- and bench-scale reactors to identify critical factors for the design of large-scale processes. Based on thermodynamic and kinetic data obtained using the lab-scale reactor, a series of SRM reactions were performed using a pelletized catalyst in the bench-scale reactor with a hydrogen production capacity of 10 L/min. Various temperature profiles were tested for the bench-scale reactor, which was surrounded by three successive cylindrical furnaces to simulate the actual SRM conditions. The temperature at the reactor bottom was crucial for determining the methane conversion and hydrogen production rates when a sufficiently high reaction temperature was maintained (>800 °C) to reach thermodynamic equilibrium at the gas-hourly space velocity of 2.0 L CH4/(h·gcat). However, if the temperature of one or more of the furnaces decreased below 700 °C, the reaction was not equilibrated at the given space velocity. The effectiveness factor (0.143) of the pelletized catalyst was calculated based on the deviation of methane conversion between the lab- and bench-scale reactions at various space velocities. Finally, an idling procedure was proposed so that catalytic activity was not affected by discontinuous operation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Catalysts for Syngas Production)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Membrane Technology in Catalytic Carbonylation Reactions
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 614; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070614
Received: 22 June 2019 / Revised: 17 July 2019 / Accepted: 18 July 2019 / Published: 19 July 2019
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Abstract
In this review, the recent achievements on the use of membrane technologies in catalytic carbonylation reactions are described. The review starts with a general introduction on the use and function of membranes in assisting catalytic chemical reactions with a particular emphasis on the [...] Read more.
In this review, the recent achievements on the use of membrane technologies in catalytic carbonylation reactions are described. The review starts with a general introduction on the use and function of membranes in assisting catalytic chemical reactions with a particular emphasis on the most widespread applications including esterification, oxidation and hydrogenation reactions. An independent paragraph will be then devoted to the state of the art of membranes in carbonylation reactions for the synthesis of dimethyl carbonate (DMC). Finally, the application of a specific membrane process, such as pervaporation, for the separation/purification of products deriving from carbonylation reactions will be presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Catalytic Carbonylation Reactions)
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Open AccessArticle
Catalytic Activities of Multimeric G-Quadruplex DNAzymes
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 613; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070613
Received: 9 July 2019 / Accepted: 15 July 2019 / Published: 19 July 2019
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Abstract
G-quadruplex DNAzymes are short DNA aptamers with repeating G4 quartets bound in a non-covalent complex with hemin. These G4/Hemin structures exhibit versatile peroxidase-like catalytic activity with a wide range of potential applications in biosensing and biotechnology. Current efforts are aimed at gaining a [...] Read more.
G-quadruplex DNAzymes are short DNA aptamers with repeating G4 quartets bound in a non-covalent complex with hemin. These G4/Hemin structures exhibit versatile peroxidase-like catalytic activity with a wide range of potential applications in biosensing and biotechnology. Current efforts are aimed at gaining a better understanding of the molecular mechanism of DNAzyme catalysis as well as devising strategies for improving their catalytic efficiency. Multimerisation of discrete units of G-quadruplexes to form multivalent DNAzyes is an emerging design strategy aimed at enhancing the peroxidase activities of DNAzymes. While this approach holds promise of generating more active multivalent G-quadruplex DNAzymes, few examples have been studied and it is not clear what factors determine the enhancement of catalytic activities of multimeric DNAzymes. In this study, we report the design and characterisation of multimers of five G-quadruplex sequences (AS1411, Bcl-2, c-MYC, PS5.M and PS2.M). Our results show that multimerisation of G-quadruplexes that form parallel structure (AS1411, Bcl-2, c-MYC) leads to significant rate enhancements characteristic of cooperative and/or synergistic interactions between the monomeric units. In contrast, multimerisation of DNA sequences that form non-parallel structures (PS5.M and PS2.M) did not exhibit similar levels of synergistic increase in activities. These results show that design of multivalent G4/Hemin structures could lead to a new set of versatile and efficient DNAzymes with enhanced capacity to catalyse peroxidase-mimic reactions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biocatalytic Applications in Biotechnology)
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Open AccessArticle
Degradation of Sulfamethoxazole Using Iron-Doped Titania and Simulated Solar Radiation
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 612; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070612
Received: 5 June 2019 / Revised: 16 July 2019 / Accepted: 17 July 2019 / Published: 19 July 2019
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Abstract
This work examined the photocatalytic destruction of sulfamethoxazole (SMX), a widely used antibiotic, under simulated solar radiation using iron-doped titanium dioxide as the photocatalyst. Amongst the various iron/titania ratios examined (in the range 0%–2%), the catalyst at 0.04% Fe/TiO2 molar ratio exhibited [...] Read more.
This work examined the photocatalytic destruction of sulfamethoxazole (SMX), a widely used antibiotic, under simulated solar radiation using iron-doped titanium dioxide as the photocatalyst. Amongst the various iron/titania ratios examined (in the range 0%–2%), the catalyst at 0.04% Fe/TiO2 molar ratio exhibited the highest photocatalytic efficiency. The reaction rate followed pseudo-first-order kinetics, where the apparent kinetic constant was reduced as the initial concentration of SMX or humic acid increased. The photodecomposition of SMX was favored in natural pH but retarded at alkaline conditions. Unexpectedly, the presence of bicarbonates (in the range of 0.125–2 g/L) improved the removal of SMX, however, experiments conducted in real environmental matrices showed that process efficiency decreased as the complexity of the water matrix increased. The presence of sodium persulfate as an electron acceptor enhanced the reaction rate. However, only a small synergy was observed between the two individual processes. On the contrary, the addition of tert-butanol, a well-known hydroxyl radical scavenger, hindered the reaction, indicating the significant contribution of these radicals to the photocatalytic degradation of SMX. The photocatalyst retained half of its initial activity after five successive experiments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photocatalysis Science and Engineering in Europe)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Hydrosoluble Complexes Bearing Tris(pyrazolyl)methane Sulfonate Ligand: Synthesis, Characterization and Catalytic Activity for Henry Reaction
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 611; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070611
Received: 2 July 2019 / Revised: 15 July 2019 / Accepted: 16 July 2019 / Published: 18 July 2019
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Abstract
The catalytic activity of the water-soluble scorpionate coordination compounds [Cu(-NN’O-Tpms)2] (1), [Mn(Tpms)2] (2) and Li[FeCl2(-NN’N’’-Tpms)] (3) [Tpms = tris(pyrazolyl)-methane sulfonate, O3SC(pz)3], were studied towards the (Henry) reaction [...] Read more.
The catalytic activity of the water-soluble scorpionate coordination compounds [Cu(-NN’O-Tpms)2] (1), [Mn(Tpms)2] (2) and Li[FeCl2(-NN’N’’-Tpms)] (3) [Tpms = tris(pyrazolyl)-methane sulfonate, O3SC(pz)3], were studied towards the (Henry) reaction between benzaldehyde and nitromethane or nitroethane in aqueous medium to afford, respectively, 2-nitro-1-phenylethanol or 2-nitro-1-phenylpropanol, the latter in the syn and the anti diastereoisomeric forms. Complex 1 exhibited the highest activity under the optimum experimental conditions and was used to broaden the scope of the reaction to include several aromatic aldehydes achieving yields up to 94%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Catalysts for Henry Reaction)
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
PdI2-Based Catalysis for Carbonylation Reactions: A Personal Account
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 610; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070610
Received: 2 July 2019 / Revised: 12 July 2019 / Accepted: 13 July 2019 / Published: 18 July 2019
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Abstract
In this account, we review our efforts in the field of carbonylation reactions promoted by palladium iodide-based catalysts, which have proven to be particularly efficient in diverse kinds of carbonylation processes (oxidative carbonylations as well as additive and substitutive carbonylations). Particularly in the [...] Read more.
In this account, we review our efforts in the field of carbonylation reactions promoted by palladium iodide-based catalysts, which have proven to be particularly efficient in diverse kinds of carbonylation processes (oxidative carbonylations as well as additive and substitutive carbonylations). Particularly in the case of oxidative carbonylations, more emphasis has been given to the most recent results and applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Catalytic Carbonylation Reactions)
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Open AccessArticle
Continuous-Flow Process for Glycerol Conversion to Solketal Using a Brönsted Acid Functionalized Carbon-Based Catalyst
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 609; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070609
Received: 17 June 2019 / Revised: 3 July 2019 / Accepted: 15 July 2019 / Published: 18 July 2019
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Abstract
The acetalization of glycerol with acetone represents a strategy for its valorization into solketal as a fuel additive component. Thus, acid carbon-based structured catalyst (SO3H-C) has been prepared, characterized and tested in this reaction. The structured catalyst (L = 5 cm, [...] Read more.
The acetalization of glycerol with acetone represents a strategy for its valorization into solketal as a fuel additive component. Thus, acid carbon-based structured catalyst (SO3H-C) has been prepared, characterized and tested in this reaction. The structured catalyst (L = 5 cm, d = 1 cm) showed a high surface density of acidic sites (2.9 mmol H+ g−1) and a high surface area. This catalyst is highly active and stable in the solketal reaction production in a batch reactor system and in a continuous downflow reactor, where several parameters were studied such as the variation of time of reaction, temperature, acetone/glycerol molar ratio (A/G) and weight hourly space velocity (WHSV). A complete glycerol conversion and 100% of solketal selectivity were achieved working in the continuous flow reactor equipped with distillation equipment when WHSV is 2.9 h−1, A/G = 8 at 57 °C in a co-solvent free operation. The catalyst maintained its activity under continuous flow even after 300 min of reaction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Catalysis for Energy Production)
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Open AccessArticle
Enhanced Photocatalytic and Antibacterial Performance of ZnO Nanoparticles Prepared by an Efficient Thermolysis Method
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 608; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070608
Received: 3 June 2019 / Revised: 13 July 2019 / Accepted: 15 July 2019 / Published: 18 July 2019
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Abstract
ZnO nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs) were synthesized by a straightforward modified thermal method using only one chemical: zinc acetate dihydrate. The process is environmentally safer than other methods because it does not involve other chemicals or a catalyst, acid, or base source. X-ray diffraction analysis [...] Read more.
ZnO nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs) were synthesized by a straightforward modified thermal method using only one chemical: zinc acetate dihydrate. The process is environmentally safer than other methods because it does not involve other chemicals or a catalyst, acid, or base source. X-ray diffraction analysis indicated that the ZnO-NPs crystallize in the hexagonal wurtzite structure. The UV–vis absorption spectra revealed a marked redshift, which is critical for enhanced photocatalytic activity. We used methylene blue for photocatalytic activity tests and found an excellent degradation percentage (99.7%) within a short time (80 min). The antibacterial activity of the synthesized ZnO-NPs was tested against Escherichia coli at different concentrations of ZnO-NPs. The analysis revealed that the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of the ZnO-NPs against E. coli was 30–50 μg/mL. Our ZnO-NPs were found to be more effective than previously reported ZnO-NPs synthesized via other methods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Trends in the Photocatalytic Removal of Organic Dyes)
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Open AccessArticle
Reduced Graphene Oxide–P25 Nanocomposites as Efficient Photocatalysts for Degradation of Bisphenol A in Water
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 607; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070607
Received: 19 June 2019 / Revised: 12 July 2019 / Accepted: 15 July 2019 / Published: 17 July 2019
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Abstract
Reduced graphene oxide–titanium dioxide photocatalyst (rGO–TiO2) was successfully synthesized by the hydrothermal method. The rGO–TiO2 was used as photocatalyst for the degradation of bisphenol A (BPA), which is a typical endocrine disruptor of the environment. Characterization of photocatalysts and photocatalytic [...] Read more.
Reduced graphene oxide–titanium dioxide photocatalyst (rGO–TiO2) was successfully synthesized by the hydrothermal method. The rGO–TiO2 was used as photocatalyst for the degradation of bisphenol A (BPA), which is a typical endocrine disruptor of the environment. Characterization of photocatalysts and photocatalytic experiments under different conditions were performed for studying the structure and properties of photocatalysts. The characterization results showed that part of the anatase type TiO2 was converted into rutile type TiO2 after hydrothermal treatment and 1% rGO–P25 had the largest specific surface area (52.174 m2/g). Photocatalytic experiments indicated that 1% rGO–P25 had the best catalytic effect, and the most suitable concentration was 0.5 g/L. When the solution pH was 5.98, the catalyst was the most active. Under visible light, the three photocatalytic mechanisms were ranked as follows: O2•− > •OH > h+. 1% rGO–P25 also had strong photocatalytic activity in the photocatalytic degradation of BPA under sunlight irradiation. 1% rGO–P25 with 0.5 g/L may be a very promising photocatalyst with a variety of light sources, especially under sunlight for practical applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Functional Organic-Inorganic Interfaces for Enhancing Catalysis)
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Open AccessArticle
The Role of Active Sites Location in Partial Oxidation of Methane to Syngas for MCM-41 Supported Ni Nanoparticles
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 606; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070606
Received: 15 June 2019 / Revised: 12 July 2019 / Accepted: 13 July 2019 / Published: 16 July 2019
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Abstract
The supporting modes of active metal over mesoporous materials play an important role in catalytic performance. The location of Ni nanoparticles inside or outside the mesoporous channel of MCM-41 has a significant influence on the reactivity in partial oxidation of methane to syngas [...] Read more.
The supporting modes of active metal over mesoporous materials play an important role in catalytic performance. The location of Ni nanoparticles inside or outside the mesoporous channel of MCM-41 has a significant influence on the reactivity in partial oxidation of methane to syngas reaction. The characterization data using different techniques (Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM), X-Ray Diffraction (XRD), N2 adsorption-desorption, H2 Temperature-Programmed Reduction (H2-TPR), and Inductively Coupled Plasma (ICP)) indicated that nickel was located outside the mesoporous channels for the impregnation method (Ni/MCM-41), while nickel was encapsulated within MCM-41 via the one-step hydrothermal crystallization method (Ni-MCM-41). The nickel atoms were mainly dispersed predominantly inside the skeleton of zeolite. When the load amount of Ni increased, both of Ni species inside the skeleton or pore channel of zeolite increased, and the ordered structure of MCM-41 was destroyed gradually. Contributed by the strong interaction with MCM-41, the Ni particles of Ni-MCM-41 were highly dispersed with smaller particle size compared with supported Ni/MCM-41 catalyst. The Ni-MCM-41 displayed higher catalytic performance than Ni/MCM-41, especially 10% Ni-MCM-41 due to high dispersity of Ni. The confinement effect of MCM-41 zeolite also afforded high resistance of sintering and coking for 10% Ni-MCM-41 catalyst. Especially, 10% Ni-MCM-41 catalyst showed outstanding catalytic stability. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Comparative Studies of Fischer-Tropsch Synthesis on Iron Catalysts Supported on Al2O3-Cr2O3 (2:1), Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotubes or BEA Zeolite Systems
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 605; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070605
Received: 30 May 2019 / Revised: 1 July 2019 / Accepted: 8 July 2019 / Published: 15 July 2019
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Abstract
The main goal of the presented paper is to study the influence of a range of support materials, i.e., multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs), Al2O3-Cr2O3 (2:1), zeolite β-H and zeolite β-Na on the physicochemical and catalytic properties [...] Read more.
The main goal of the presented paper is to study the influence of a range of support materials, i.e., multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs), Al2O3-Cr2O3 (2:1), zeolite β-H and zeolite β-Na on the physicochemical and catalytic properties in Fischer-Tropsch (F-T) synthesis. All tested Fe catalysts were synthesized using the impregnation method. Their physicochemical properties were extensively investigated using various characterization techniques such as the Temperature-Programmed Reduction of hydrogen (TPR-H2), X-ray diffraction, Temperature-Programmed Desorption of ammonia (TPD-NH3), Temperature-Programmed Desorption of carbon dioxide (TPD-CO2), Fourier transform infrared spectrometry (FTIR), Brunauer Emmett Teller method (BET) and Thermogravimetric Differential Analysis coupled with Mass Spectrometer (TG-DTA-MS). Activity tests were performed in F-T synthesis using a high-pressure fixed bed reactor and a gas mixture of H2 and CO (50% CO and 50% H2). The correlation between the physicochemical properties and reactivity in F-T synthesis was determined. The highest activity was from a 40%Fe/Al2O3-Cr2O3 (2:1) system which exhibited 89.9% of CO conversion and 66.6% selectivity toward liquid products. This catalyst also exhibited the lowest acidity, but the highest quantity of iron carbides on its surface. In addition, in the case of iron catalysts supported on MWCNTs or a binary oxide system, the smallest amount of carbon deposit formed on the surface of the catalyst during the F-T process was confirmed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Iron and Cobalt Catalysts)
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Open AccessArticle
Graphene Supported Tungsten Carbide as Catalyst for Electrochemical Reduction of CO2
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 604; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070604
Received: 14 June 2019 / Revised: 28 June 2019 / Accepted: 4 July 2019 / Published: 15 July 2019
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Abstract
Electrochemical reduction of CO2 to useful chemical and fuels in an energy efficient way is currently an expensive and inefficient process. Recently, low-cost transition metal-carbides (TMCs) have been proven to exhibit similar electronic structure similarities to Platinum-Group-Metal (PGM) catalysts and hence, can [...] Read more.
Electrochemical reduction of CO2 to useful chemical and fuels in an energy efficient way is currently an expensive and inefficient process. Recently, low-cost transition metal-carbides (TMCs) have been proven to exhibit similar electronic structure similarities to Platinum-Group-Metal (PGM) catalysts and hence, can be good substitutes for some important reduction reactions. In this work, we test graphene-supported WC (Tungsten Carbide) nanoclusters as an electrocatalyst for the CO2 reduction reaction. Specifically, we perform density functional theory (DFT) studies to understand various possible reaction mechanisms and determine the lowest thermodynamic energy landscape of CO2 reduction to various products, such as CO, HCOOH, CH3OH, and CH4. This in-depth study of reaction energetics could lead to improvements and development of more efficient electrocatalysts for CO2 reduction. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Catalytic Oxidation of Dimethyl Disulfide over Bimetallic Cu–Au and Pt–Au Catalysts Supported on γ-Al2O3, CeO2, and CeO2–Al2O3
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 603; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070603
Received: 19 June 2019 / Revised: 8 July 2019 / Accepted: 12 July 2019 / Published: 13 July 2019
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Abstract
Dimethyl disulfide (DMDS, CH3SSCH3) is an odorous and harmful air pollutant (volatile organic compound (VOC)) causing nuisance in urban areas. The abatement of DMDS emissions from industrial sources can be realized through catalytic oxidation. However, the development of active [...] Read more.
Dimethyl disulfide (DMDS, CH3SSCH3) is an odorous and harmful air pollutant (volatile organic compound (VOC)) causing nuisance in urban areas. The abatement of DMDS emissions from industrial sources can be realized through catalytic oxidation. However, the development of active and selective catalysts having good resistance toward sulfur poisoning is required. This paper describes an investigation related to improving the performance of Pt and Cu catalysts through the addition of Au to monometallic “parent” catalysts via surface redox reactions. The catalysts were characterized using ICP-OES, N2 physisorption, XRD, XPS, HR-TEM, H2-TPR, NH3-TPD, CO2-TPD, and temperature-programmed 18O2 isotopic exchange. The performance of the catalysts was evaluated in DMDS total oxidation. In addition, the stability of a Pt–Au/Ce–Al catalyst was investigated through 40 h time onstream. Cu–Au catalysts were observed to be more active than corresponding Pt–Au catalysts based on DMDS light-off experiments. However, the reaction led to a higher amount of oxygen-containing byproduct formation, and thus the Pt–Au catalysts were more selective. H2-TPR showed that the higher redox capacity of the Cu-containing catalysts may have been the reason for better DMDS conversion and lower selectivity. The lower amount of reactive oxygen on the surface of Pt-containing catalysts was beneficial for total oxidation. The improved selectivity of ceria-containing catalysts after the Au addition may have resulted from the lowered amount of reactive oxygen as well. The Au addition improved the activity of Al2O3-supported Cu and Pt. The Au addition also had a positive effect on SO2 production in a higher temperature region. A stability test of 40 h showed that the Pt–Au/Ce–Al catalyst, while otherwise promising, was not stable enough, and further development is still needed. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Hydrogen Production Improvement on Water Decomposition Through Internal Interfacial Charge Transfer in M3(PO4)2-M2P2O7 Mixed-Phase Catalyst (M = Co, Ni, and Cu)
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 602; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070602
Received: 7 June 2019 / Revised: 10 July 2019 / Accepted: 11 July 2019 / Published: 13 July 2019
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Abstract
In this study, three types of Nasicon-type materials, Co3(PO4)2-CO2P2O7, Ni3(PO4)2-Ni2P2O7, and Cu3(PO4)2-Cu2 [...] Read more.
In this study, three types of Nasicon-type materials, Co3(PO4)2-CO2P2O7, Ni3(PO4)2-Ni2P2O7, and Cu3(PO4)2-Cu2P2O7, were synthesized as mixed-phase catalysts (MPCs) for evaluating their potential as new photocatalytic candidates (called Co3(PO4)2-CO2P2O7mpc, Ni3(PO4)2-Ni2P2O7mpc, and Cu3(PO4)2-Cu2P2O7mpc herein). Based on various physical properties, it was confirmed that there are two phases, M3(PO4)2 and M2P2O7, in which a similar phase equilibrium energy coexists. These colored powders showed UV and visible light responses suitable to our aim of developing 365-nm light-response photocatalysts for overall water-splitting. The photocatalytic performance of Ni2(PO4)3-Ni2P2O7 MPC showed negligible or no activity toward H2 evolution. However, Co2(PO4)3-Co2P2O7 MPC and Cu3(PO4)2-Cu2P2O7 MPC were determined as interesting materials because of their ability to absorb visible light within a suitable band. Moreover, an internal interface charge transfer was suggested to occur that would lower the recombination rate of electrons and holes. For Cu3(PO4)2-Cu2P2O7 MPC, the charge separation between the electron and hole was advantageously achieved, a water-splitting reaction was promoted, and hydrogen generation was considerably increased. The performance of a catalyst depended on the nature of the active metal added. In addition, the performance of the catalyst was improved when electrons migrated between the inter-phases despite the lack of a heterojunction with other crystals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photocatalysis: Activity of Nanomaterials)
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Open AccessArticle
Activated Carbon as a Cathode for Water Disinfection through the Electro-Fenton Process
Catalysts 2019, 9(7), 601; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal9070601
Received: 20 June 2019 / Revised: 8 July 2019 / Accepted: 10 July 2019 / Published: 12 July 2019
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Abstract
Unlike many other water disinfection methods, hydroxyl radicals (HO) produced by the Fenton reaction (Fe2+/H2O2) can inactivate pathogens regardless of taxonomic identity of genetic potential and do not generate halogenated disinfection by-products. Hydrogen peroxide (H [...] Read more.
Unlike many other water disinfection methods, hydroxyl radicals (HO) produced by the Fenton reaction (Fe2+/H2O2) can inactivate pathogens regardless of taxonomic identity of genetic potential and do not generate halogenated disinfection by-products. Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) required for the process is typically electrogenerated using various carbonaceous materials as cathodes. However, high costs and necessary modifications to the cathodes still present a challenge to large-scale implementation. In this work, we use granular activated carbon (GAC) as a cathode to generate H2O2 for water disinfection through the electro-Fenton process. GAC is a low-cost amorphous carbon with abundant oxygen- and carbon-containing groups that are favored for oxygen reduction into H2O2. Results indicate that H2O2 production at the GAC cathode is higher with more GAC, lower pH, and smaller reactor volume. Through the addition of iron ions, the electrogenerated H2O2 is transformed into HO that efficiently inactivated model pathogen (Escherichia coli) under various water chemistry conditions. Chick–Watson modeling results further showed the strong lethality of produced HO from the electro-Fenton process. This inactivation coupled with high H2O2 yield, excellent reusability, and relatively low cost of GAC proves that GAC is a promising cathodic material for large-scale water disinfection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Catalysis in Advanced Oxidation Processes)
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