291163 Pt Catalyst Preparation: How Surface Loading Affects Strong Electrostatic Adsorption
As our supply of metals used for catalysis dwindles and becomes more expensive, the need to synthesize more efficient catalysts becomes clearer. The primary goal of catalyst synthesis is to control the synthesis parameters to maximize catalyst effectiveness, and the most important metric in this regard is metal particle size.
The Regalbuto group is researching ways to make very small metal particles with strong electrostatic adsorption (SEA). A recent hypothesis of the group is that SEA can be applied at high ratios of solid catalyst support to liquid metal precursor solution, but that metal adsorption decreases as slurries get thicker. The purpose of this project is to test this prediction for the platinum tetraamine on silica catalyst system. Metal uptake was determined by atomic absorption measurements of the solution before and after contact with the support. Metal particle size was determined by x-ray diffraction and chemisorption. It was determined that there is not a strong correlation between the extent of metal adsorption and slurry thickness, at least up to a surface loading of 10,000 m2/L. On the contrary, there is evidently a positive linear-like trend between metal particle size and slurry thickness.
Future work would include reproducing this analysis for different catalyst systems, studying a higher surface loading (such as 50,000 m2/L), using a Gaussian fitting software to measure x-ray diffraction patterns, and using the ICP machine for a more precise analysis of uptake. If the current results are validated by these additional experiments, revision of the model used to simulate SEA is warranted.
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