The Structure of Catalytically Active Gold on Titania

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Science  08 Oct 2004:
Vol. 306, Issue 5694, pp. 252-255
DOI: 10.1126/science.1102420

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The high catalytic activity of gold clusters on oxides has been attributed to structural effects (including particle thickness and shape and metal oxidation state), as well as to support effects. We have created well-ordered gold mono-layers and bilayers that completely wet (cover) the oxide support, thus eliminating particle shape and direct support effects. High-resolution electron energy loss spectroscopy and carbon monoxide adsorption confirm that the gold atoms are bonded to titanium atoms. Kinetic measurements for the catalytic oxidation of carbon monoxide show that the gold bilayer structure is significantly more active (by more than an order of magnitude) than the monolayer.

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