Molecular catalysis science: Perspective on unifying the fields of catalysis.
- Author(s): Ye, Rong
- Hurlburt, Tyler J
- Sabyrov, Kairat
- Alayoglu, Selim
- Somorjai, Gabor A
- et al.
Published Web Locationhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4868463/
Colloidal chemistry is used to control the size, shape, morphology, and composition of metal nanoparticles. Model catalysts as such are applied to catalytic transformations in the three types of catalysts: heterogeneous, homogeneous, and enzymatic. Real-time dynamics of oxidation state, coordination, and bonding of nanoparticle catalysts are put under the microscope using surface techniques such as sum-frequency generation vibrational spectroscopy and ambient pressure X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy under catalytically relevant conditions. It was demonstrated that catalytic behavior and trends are strongly tied to oxidation state, the coordination number and crystallographic orientation of metal sites, and bonding and orientation of surface adsorbates. It was also found that catalytic performance can be tuned by carefully designing and fabricating catalysts from the bottom up. Homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysts, and likely enzymes, behave similarly at the molecular level. Unifying the fields of catalysis is the key to achieving the goal of 100% selectivity in catalysis.