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The effect of heat treatment on the performance and structure of carbon-supported Au–Pd catalysts for the direct synthesis of hydrogen peroxide

Journal of Catalysis
DOI: 10.1016/j.jcat.2012.05.018
  • Gold Palladium Nanoparticles
  • Hydrogen Peroxide Direct Synthesis
  • Aberration-Corrected Microscopy


Abstract The direct synthesis of hydrogen peroxide using supported gold palladium catalysts prepared by incipient wetness impregnation is described and discussed. The effect of an acid pre-treatment step on the activated carbon support prior to the deposition of the metals, together with the effect of the calcination temperature, has been investigated. The acid pre-treated samples all show superior activity to those materials prepared with the omission of this acid pre-treatment stage. The calcination temperature affects both the re-usability and hydrogenation activity of the catalysts. Detailed characterisation using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and aberration-corrected scanning transmission electron microscopy is described. The enhanced activity is associated with a higher surface concentration of palladium in the acid pre-treated samples which is principally present as Pd2+. Calcination of the catalysts at 400°C is required to achieve re-usable and stable catalysts, and this is associated with the morphology and dispersion of the metal nanoparticles. The surface ratio of Pd0/Pd2+ is found to be an important factor controlling the hydrogenation of hydrogen peroxide, and a series of controlled reduction and re-oxidation of a sample show how the Pd0/Pd2+ surface ratio can influence the relative rates of hydrogen peroxide synthesis and hydrogenation.

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