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Advanced energy materials: defect rich zirconia support anchoring monatomic Ni for photocatalytic CO2 reduction

The energy crisis greenhouse effect of

are essentially due to the overuse of fossil fuels. For the sustainable development of human society in recent years more more researches focus on the use of sunlight to reduce greenhouse gas CO2 to usable chemicals such as Co. From a chemical point of view the carbon oxygen double bond energy of CO2 molecule is 750 kJ / mol which makes CO2 gas more inert difficult to be reduced. Secondly due to the influence of objective factors such as hydrogen production from water decomposition complex intermediate path of CO2 reduction it is very difficult to convert CO2 into specific reduction products resulting in poor CO2 reduction selectivity. Therefore the development of a high activity high selectivity photocatalyst for CO2 reduction has become a hot spot difficulty in this field. In recent years

catalysts have been proved to be highly active selective for CO2 reduction. However due to the fact that most of the metal monoatomic dispersion substrates are carbon nitrogen carriers sacrificial agents are often used in practical photocatalytic applications to avoid photo corrosion. Therefore it is a promising direction to develop new metal oxide monoatomic catalysts avoid the use of additional additives such as sacrificial agents.

Zhang Tierui a researcher in the Institute of physical chemical technology of China Academy of Sciences developed a monoatomic photocatalyst with monodisperse Ni atoms on the defect rich zirconia carrier by using novel sol gel calcination method. This kind of photocatalyst makes full use of the defect sites on zirconia materials which not only provides a successful example for the preparation of single atom but also enriches the understing of the application of defect sites for scientific researchers. Compared with zirconia with defect sites zirconia with both Ni atoms defect sites showed higher activity (11.8 μ mol g − 1 h − 1) selectivity (92.5%) for CO reduction. In order to further study the characteristics of the single atom catalyst for CO2 reduction we found that the single atom Ni site not only reduced the transition state activation energy of CO2 reduction to CO but also greatly inhibited the desorption of H2 on the surface thus enhancing the activity selectivity of CO2 reduction to Co.

in this paper the introduction of single atom sites into defect rich metal oxide materials provides a new research idea for the development of new efficient single atom photocatalysts. The related research work has been published in adv. energy mater. (DOI: 10.1002 / aenm. 202002928).

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