Bridging the Pressure Gap in CO Oxidation


Author: Sara Blomberg, Uta Hejral, Mikhail Shipilin, Stefano Albertin, Hanna Karlsson, Christian Hulteberg, Patrick Lömker, Christopher Goodwin, David Degerman, Johan Gustafson, Christoph Schlueter, Anders Nilsson, Edvin Lundgren, Peter Amann ACS Catalysis
Date: 2021
Instruments: BAR XPS

Performing fundamental operando catalysis studies under realistic conditions is a key to further develop and increase the efficiency of industrial catalysts. Operando X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) experiments have been limited to pressures, and the relevance for industrial applications has been questioned. Herein, we report on the CO oxidation experiment on Pd(100) performed at a total pressure of 1 bar using XPS. We investigate the light-off regime and the surface chemical composition at the atomistic level in the highly active phase. Furthermore, the observed gas-phase photoemission peaks of CO2, CO, and O2 indicate that the kinetics of the reaction during the light-off regime can be followed operando, and by studying the reaction rate of the reaction, the activation energy is calculated. The reaction was preceded by an in situ oxidation study in 7% O2 in He and a total pressure of 70 mbar to confirm the surface sensitivity and assignment of the oxygen-induced photoemission peaks. However, oxygen-induced photoemission peaks were not observed during the reaction studies, but instead, a metallic Pd phase is present in the highly active regime under the conditions applied. The novel XPS setup utilizes hard X-rays to enable high-pressure studies, combined with a grazing incident angle to increase the surface sensitivity of the measurement. Our findings demonstrate the possibilities of achieving chemical information of the catalyst, operando, on an atomistic level, under industrially relevant conditions.