Atomic-layered Au clusters on α-MoC as catalysts for the low-temperature water-gas shift reaction

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Science  22 Jun 2017:
DOI: 10.1126/science.aah4321

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The water-gas shift (WGS) reaction (CO+H2O=H2+CO2) is an essential process for hydrogen generation and CO removal in various energy-related chemical operations. This equilibrium-limited reaction is favored at a low working temperature. Potential application in fuel cells also requires a WGS catalyst to be highly active, stable and energy-efficient and match the working temperature of on-site hydrogen generation and consumption units. We synthesized Au layered clusters on an α-MoC substrate to create an interfacial catalyst system for the ultra-low-temperature WGS reaction. Water was activated over α-MoC at 303 Kelvin (K), while CO adsorbed on adjacent Au sites is apt to react with surface hydroxyl groups formed from water splitting, leading to a high WGS activity at low-temperatures.

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