Now showing 1 - 10 of 32
  • Publication
    SBA-15 Modified with Tethered Ionic Liquids Applied in the Esterification of Valeric Acid with Pentanol—Towards Cellulosic Biofuels
    Two catalysts are prepared by tethering ionic liquid cation components (1-(propyl-3-sulfonate)-3-(3-trimethoxysilylpropyl) imidazolium) with either chloride or sulphate anions, to the surface of a mesoporous SiO2 material through a condensation reaction. These are characterized using elemental analysis, TGA-MS, FTIR (and D-FTIR), TEM, physisorption and NH3 adsorption (TPD and FTIR), and applied in the valeric acid + pentanol esterification reaction to form the sustainable biodiesel Pentyl Valerate. The material containing the sulfate counter-ion was significantly more active than the chloride analogue.
  • Publication
    Preparation and characterization of 4-dimethylaminopyridine-stabilized palladium nanoparticles
    (American Chemical Society, 2007-12-04) ; ;
    4-Dimethylaminopyridine (DMAP)-stabilized palladium nanoparticles with a mean diameter of 3.4 +/- 0.5 mn are prepared from the aqueous phase reduction of Na2PdCl4 using NaBH4 in the presence of DMAP. TEM and UV-vis spectroscopy characterization of the nanoparticle dispersion shows no obvious change in the nanoparticles several months after preparation. H-1 NMR spectroscopy of the nanoparticles shows that the nanoparticle dispersion also contains a boron/DMAP complex and two palladium/DMAP complexes. One of the palladium complexes crystallizes out of the dispersion and is identified as Pd(DMAP)(4)(OH)(2) by X-ray crystallography. Following extensive analysis, it is believed that the palladium/DMAP complexes are formed following the oxidation of the palladium nanoparticles. The prepared nanoparticle dispersion promotes selective hydrogen/deuterium (H/D) exchange on the carbon atoms alpha to the endocyclic nitrogen atom on the DMAP-stabilizing ligands through reaction with D2O. This activity is attributed to the presence of the nanoparticles rather than to the presence of the oxidized palladium/DMAP complexes.
      619Scopus© Citations 42
  • Publication
    Carbon-Doped TiO2 and Carbon, Tungsten-Codoped TiO2 through Sol-Gel Processes in the Presence of Melamine Borate: Reflections through Photocatalysis
    A series of C-doped, W-doped, and C,Wcodoped TiO2 samples have been prepared using modified sol-gel techniques. Reproducible inexpensive C-doping arises from the presence of melamine borate in a sol-gel mixture, whereas W-doping is from the addition of tungstic acid to the sol. The materials have been characterized using elemental analysis, N2 physisorption (BET), thermogravimetric analysis, X-ray diffraction, Raman, X-ray photoelectron, UV-vis spectroscopies, and photocatalytic activity measurements. Doping C and W independently results in an increased absorbance in the visible region of the spectrum with a synergistic effect in increased absorbance when both elements are codoped. The increased visible-light absorbance of the W-doped or codoped materials is not reflected in photocatalytic activity. Visiblelight- induced photocatalytic activity of C-doped material was superior to that of an undoped catalyst, paving the way for its application under only visible-light irradiation conditions. A significant fraction of the spectral red shift commonly observed with doped catalysts might be due to the formation of color centers as a result of defects associated with oxygen vacancies, and bandgap-related narrowing or intragap localization of dopant levels are not the only factors responsible for enhanced visible-light absorption in doped photocatalysts. Furthermore, bandgap narrowing through increases in the energy of the valence band may actually decrease photo-oxidation activity through a curtailment of one route of oxidation.
      870Scopus© Citations 108
  • Publication
    Different dispersions of group II catalysts over SBA 15 and MCM-41: Effects on transesterification reactivity
    Activities of CaO catalysts on SBA-15 and MCM-41 have been compared in transesterification and SBA-15 supported samples invariably more active than those on MCM-41. Increased activity is not due to diffusional effects (as measured using substrates of differing size) but rather to increased dispersion of CaO on SBA-15 (as measured using NOx TPD). The effect, i.e. increased reactivity of SBA-15 supported catalysts being related to increased dispersion, is also noted in supported BaO catalysts while supported MgCO3 catalysts show little variation in dispersion (or in reactivity) as a function of the support used.
      253Scopus© Citations 8
  • Publication
    Serendipity following attempts to prepare C-doped rutile TiO2
    Attempts to mimic the band gap narrowing seen in anatase TiO2 following C-doping of the lattice where the C arose from a melamine borate precursor were made in situations where the sol-gel mixture was directed towards rutile formation. The formed materials were characterised using XRD, BET, UV-Vis spectroscopy, XPS and TEM and their activities in promoting the photo-degradation of 4-chlorophenol were analysed. It was found that carbon was not doped into the lattice (in contrast to the situations where the sol-gel mixture was directed towards the precipitation of anatase TiO2). In spite of how common reports of the preparation of C-doped TiO2 using sol-gel processes have been, the presence of carbon dopant precursors in a crystallising sol does not necessarily result in the incorporation of C dopants within the final crystalline material, i.e. the nature of the condensing sol is also important. The presence of melamine borate did however increase the proportion of rutile in the final mixture (indeed in the presence of melamine borate the pure rutile phase was formed) and also resulted in materials with higher surface areas (as measured using BET). Furthermore, TEM has shown that rutile TiO2 condensed in the presence of melamine borate had a much more distinct rod-like shape than that condensed in its absence (the latter being more spherical in shape). These materials, notwithstanding the absence of any dopant effect, demonstrated enhanced photocatalytic activity when compared with analogous materials prepared in the absence of melamine borate and this effect is ascribed to both their relatively larger surface areas and their specific shape. Therefore, we have serendipitously come across a method for improving the performance of rutile photocatalysts while searching for a method to generate C-doped rutile TiO2.
      480Scopus© Citations 11
  • Publication
    The combustion of carbon particulates using NO/O2 mixtures : The influence of SO42− and NOx trapping materials
    (Elsevier, 2006-05-30) ;
    The activity of several catalysts are studied in the soot combustion reaction using air and NO/air as oxidising agents. Over Al2O3-supported catalysts NO(g) is a promoter for the combustion reaction with the extent of promotion depending on the Na loading. Over these catalysts SO42− poisons this promotion by preventing NO oxidation through a site blocking mechanism. SiO2 is unable to adsorb NO or catalyse its oxidation and over SiO2-supported Na catalysts NO(g) inhibits the combustion reaction. This is ascribed to a competition between NO and O2. Over Fe-ZSM-5 catalysts the presence of a NOx trapping component does not increase the combustion of soot in the presence of NO(g) and it is proposed that this previously reported effect is only seen under continuous NOx trap operation as NO2 is periodically released during regeneration and thus available for soot combustion. Experiments during which the [NO](g) is varied show that CO, rather than an adsorbed carbonyl-like intermediate, is formed upon reaction between NO2 (the proposed oxygen carrier) and soot.
      275Scopus© Citations 9
  • Publication
    Ti-Doped SBA-15 Catalysts Used in Phenol Oxidation Reactions
    Two Ti-SBA-15 catalysts are synthesized using techniques that should either deposit Ti atoms specifically at the SBA-15 surface or allow Ti-containing species to exist at both the surface and within the bulk of SBA-15. The materials have been characterized by Fourier transform infrared (FTIR), Raman and UV visible spectroscopies, transmission electron microscopy, scanning electron microscopy/energy-dispersive X-ray spectrometry microscopies, and N2 physisorption experiments. They have been applied in the total oxidation of phenol under catalytic wet air oxidation (CWAO) conditions and using photo-and plasma promotion. The materials retain the structure of SBA-15 following the doping in both cases and Ti incorporation is confirmed. The nature of the incorporated Ti remains unclear-with evidence for anatase TiO2 (from Raman and UV vis analysis) and evidence for atomically dispersed Ti from FTIR. In terms of reactivity, the presence of Ti in the in situ-prepared catalyst improves reactivity in the photopromoted reaction (increasing conversion from 28 to 60%), while both Ti catalysts improve reactivity in the CWAO reaction (by 7% over the in situ catalyst and by 25% over the grafted material). The presence of Ti has no beneficial effect on conversion in the plasma-promoted reaction. Here, however, Ti does affect the nature of the oxidized intermediates formed during the total phenol oxidation.
      130Scopus© Citations 5
  • Publication
    Attempts at an in-situ Raman study of Ceria / Zirconia catalysts in PM combustion
    CexZr1−xO2 catalysts with various Ce/Zr contents were studied using Raman spectroscopy under different gaseous atmospheres, at different temperatures and in the presence of a model soot. Catalysts with high concentrations of Zr fluoresced at elevated temperatures making analysis of their spectra impossible. This effect became even more pronounced at higher temperatures. CeO2 and solid solutions with relatively low concentrations of Zr showed a red shift and a decrease in intensity of the characteristic F2g peak at high temperatures under different atmospheres. The magnitude of the latter effect was higher under reducing atmospheres. These changes are reversible upon cooling, showing that they relate to a lattice expansion effect rather than any major chemical change to the material. In the presence of the model soot the Raman spectra of all materials was much decreased due to the absorption of the incident and scattered radiation by the soot particles. The presence of soot does not change the relative intensities or positions of the peaks in the spectra of the solid solutions. Evidence is shown for the production of a Ce3+–CO species following interaction between the soot and the surface at high temperature in an inert atmosphere.
      567Scopus© Citations 18
  • Publication
    Visible light active C-doped titanate nanotubes prepared via alkaline hydrothermal treatment of C-doped nanoparticulate TiO2: Photo-electrochemical and photocatalytic properties
    Carbon-doped titanate nanotubes (C-TNT) were formed via alkaline hydrothermal treatment of a TiO2 nanoparticulate material pre-doped with carbon. Attempts to form C and W co-doped titanate nanotubes using analogous C and W co-doped nanoparticulate materials were unsuccessful. Physical characterisations, such as X-ray diffraction, N2 physisorption and Transmission Electron Microscopy, confirmed the formation of titanate nanotubes ~7 nm in diameter and hundreds of nm in length with increased surface areas relative to the nanoparticulate precursors. X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy confirmed the retention of substitutional carbon dopant and the exclusion of tungsten dopant from the doped TNT materials. Converting doped (or undoped TiO2) into C-TNT (or TNT) slightly increases the material’s bandgap but the C-TNT material (in contrast to TNT and undoped TiO2) absorbs into the visible region of the spectrum. C-doped and un-doped titanate nanotube materials were more active in promoting the photo degradation of 4-chlorophenol under visible light than their analogous nanoparticulate precursors. C-TNT was the most photocatalytically active material tested. However, photocurrent response measurements showed C-TNT to be less effective at generating current following irradiation than both its nanoparticulate analogue and nanoparticulate P25 when screen printed onto electrode surfaces. We ascribe this to non-optimal alignment of the TNTs on the electrode surface.
      624Scopus© Citations 33
  • Publication
    NH3 and urea in the selective catalytic reduction of NOx over oxide-supported copper catalysts
    (Elsevier, 2005-02-10) ;
    The temperature-programmed activity of a series of oxide-supported (TiO2, Al2O3 and SiO2) Cu catalysts formed from two different Cu precursors (Cu(NO3)(2) and CuSO4) for the selective catalytic reduction of NOx using solutions of urea as a reductant have been determined. These activities are compared to those found using NH3 as a reducing agent over the same catalysts in the presence of H2O and it is found that catalysts that are active for the selective reduction of NOx with NH3 are inactive for its reduction using solutions of urea. Poisoning of the surface by H2Oads is not responsible for all of this decrease in activity and it is postulated that the urea is not hydrolysing to form NH3 over the catalysts but rather is oxidising to form N-2 or forming passivated layers of polymeric melamine complexes on the surface. The catalysts were characterised by temperature-programmed reduction while temperature-programmed desorption and oxidation of NH3 and temperature programmed decomposition of urea are used to characterise the interaction of both reductants with the various catalysts.
      896Scopus© Citations 61