Inverse catalysts and catalysis at interfaces: a surface science perspective
School of Chemical Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47906
Over the past 20 years, the research group of Manos Mavrikakis has made many seminal contributions to the field of theoretical heterogeneous catalysis, with discoveries ranging from the structure and activity of near-surface alloys for hydrogenation reactions to the mechanism of water-gas shift reactions on transition metals to the chemistry of iron oxide films on platinum substrates. This work has transformed the field and has helped to launch a fresh wave of enthusiasm for both the place of fundamental science in the field of catalysis and the role that theory may play in understanding and predicting catalytic properties. My own research unquestionably owes a great deal to the impact of Manos’s work, and in this presentation, I will briefly summarize some recent investigations that emphasize concepts that Manos has played an important role in developing. In particular, I will discuss the development of Density Functional Theory (DFT)-based tools to predict the structure and catalytic properties of so-called inverse catalysts, which consist of ultrathin hydoxyoxide films on precious metal substrates and which can rapidly restructure as a function of changing reaction conditions, and I will also discuss analogous results for the properties of classic interfaces between metal nanoparticles and oxide supports, with applications to the water-gas shift reaction. In both cases, I will endeavor to highlight the impact that Manos has had on related fields and will briefly provide my own perspectives on future directions in the relevant fields.
See more of this Group/Topical: Catalysis and Reaction Engineering Division