On the high structural heterogeneity of Fe impregnated graphite-carbon catalysts from Fe nitrate precursor

Arrigo, R ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2877-8733 and Schuster, ME 2019, 'On the high structural heterogeneity of Fe impregnated graphite-carbon catalysts from Fe nitrate precursor' , Catalysts, 9 (4) , p. 303.

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Wet impregnation is broadly applied for the synthesis of carbon supported metal/metal oxide nanostructures because of its high flexibility, simplicity and low cost. By contrast, impregnated catalysts are typified by a usually undesired nanostructural and morphological heterogeneity of the supported phase resulting from a poor stabilization at the support surface. This study on graphite-supported Fe based materials from Fe nitrate precursor is concerned with the understanding of the chemistry that dictates during the multi-step synthesis, which is key to designing structurally homogeneous catalysts. By means of core level X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, near edge X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy and atomic resolution electron microscopy, we not only found a large variety of particles sizes and morphologies but also chemical phases. Herein, thermally stable single atoms and few atoms clusters are identified together with large agglomerates of an oxy-hydroxide ferrihydrite-like phase. Moreover, the thermally induced phase transformation of the initially poorly ordered oxy-hydroxide phase into several oxide phases is revealed, together with the existence of thermally stable N impurities retained in the structure as Fe-N-O bonds. The nature of the interactions with the support and the structural dynamics induced by the thermal treatment rationalize the high heterogeneity observed in these catalysts.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of Environment and Life Sciences > Biomedical Research Centre
Journal or Publication Title: Catalysts
Publisher: MDPI
ISSN: 2073-4344
Related URLs:
Depositing User: USIR Admin
Date Deposited: 26 Mar 2019 08:34
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2022 01:21
URI: https://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/50632

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