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A surface science investigation of methanol synthesis on Cu-Ga/ZrO2 catalysts

Grant number: 18/05799-0
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Post-doctor
Effective date (Start): July 07, 2018
Effective date (End): January 06, 2019
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Chemical Engineering - Chemical Process Industries
Principal Investigator:Reinaldo Giudici
Grantee:Francielle Candian Firmino Marcos
Supervisor abroad: Jose Antonio Rodriguez
Home Institution: Escola Politécnica (EP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Local de pesquisa : Brookhaven National Laboratory, United States  
Associated to the scholarship:17/08293-8 - Project 14: direct synthesis of methanol from CO2, BP.PD


In the last decade, the chemistry of carbon dioxide has drawn extensive attention because of its potential commercial interest and the utilization of carbon dioxide as a substrate for clean fuel production. CO2 recycling in the form of methanol can be considered a catalytic system of high interest in industry, since methanol is a vital raw material for the petrochemical and chemical industries. In this regard, forming methanol by CO2 hydrogenation is one of the promising, effectual and economic techniques for utilization of CO2, and it can be a key to reducing atmospheric emissions and helping to satisfy a high energy demands. The purpose of this research is to improve understanding of surface interactions on reactant-active sites in the CO2 conversion process and methanol synthesis over Cu-Ga/ZrO2 catalysts under realistic conditions. For this work, Cu-Ga/ZrO2 catalysts were synthesized by a surfactant-assisted co-precipitation method using Pluronic (P-123) as a template and will be evaluated under operando and in situ facilities at Brookhaven National Laboratory. Ambient pressure techniques, such as AP-XPS, and Infrared Spectroscopy should be utilized to determine the adsorption strength and configurations of CO2 and key intermediates. Furthermore, in situ techniques, such as environmental TEM and synchrotron-based XRD and X-ray absorption techniques, should be employed to characterize the morphological effects, electronic and structural properties of catalysts prepared by the one-pot method under realistic conditions. Thus, we expect to identify the most important active intermediates in methanol production from CO2 hydrogenation at realistic conditions. Reaction mechanisms as well as the morphological effects, electronic and structural properties of catalysts focusing on increasing its selectivity and tuning our catalyst system.