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Home > Press > Common industrial catalyst sports rafts of platinum

Rafts of catalytic platinum oxide
float above a sea of aluminum
oxide, anchored by bonds
between platinum and aluminum.
Rafts of catalytic platinum oxide float above a sea of aluminum oxide, anchored by bonds between platinum and aluminum.

Abstract:
Scientists in the Institute for Interfacial Catalysis at DOE's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Oak Ridge National Laboratory analyzed the common industrial catalyst aluminum oxide-supported platinum.

Common industrial catalyst sports rafts of platinum

Oak Ridge, TN | Posted on October 15th, 2009

The study, which appears in Science and used the 900-MHz nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometer at DOE's EMSL, shows that aluminum atoms in the catalyst's supporting material bond with and anchor platinum. The anchors allow platinum atoms to group into rafts that float above the supporting surface, providing ample space for chemical reactions. This clear molecular-level view of the processes that create platinum rafts will help engineers control the preparation of this important class of catalyst materials, improving catalytic processes for petroleum refining, vehicle emission control, and many other important applications.

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About Oak Ridge National Laboratory
ORNL is a multiprogram science and technology laboratory managed for the U.S. Department of Energy by UT-Battelle, LLC. Scientists and engineers at ORNL conduct basic and applied research and development to create scientific knowledge and technological solutions that strengthen the nation's leadership in key areas of science; increase the availability of clean, abundant energy; restore and protect the environment; and contribute to national security.

ORNL also performs other work for the Department of Energy, including isotope production, information management, and technical program management, and provides research and technical assistance to other organizations. The laboratory is a program of DOE's Oak Ridge Field Office.

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Kristin Manke
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