Developing Ceria-Based Catalysts
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Ceria-supported metal catalysts are widely used in automotive emissions control, where ceria provides “Oxygen Storage Capacitance.” Ceria-supported metals also have potential for a large number of other applications, ranging from methane oxidation to the water-gas-shift reaction, due to the enhanced properties that ceria imparts. However, the activities and stabilities depend strongly on the structure of the ceria and whether or not it is mixed with a second oxide. Catalyst properties are also affected by how catalytic metals interact with the support. In this talk, I will first discuss work aimed at understanding the role that ceria plays in oxygen storage and demonstrate that the thermodynamic redox properties of catalytic forms of ceria differ from that of bulk ceria. I will then talk about our efforts to maximize the interactions between catalytic metals and ceria, as well as prevent sintering of the metal particles, through the preparation of core-shell catalysts deposited onto a functionalized-alumina support. These core-shell catalysts exhibit exceptional activity for methane oxidation, with impressive stability at high temperatures.