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Constructing the solid frustrated Lewis pairs on the surface of porous nanorods of CeO2
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Frustrated Lewis pairs (FLPs), Lewis acids and bases that are sterically prevented from the direct interaction to form the classic Lewis acid-base adjuncts, can efficiently and cooperatively activate many small molecules (e.g. H2, CO2, NO) and even strong C−H bond for many important catalytic reactions including hydrogenation, hydroamination and carbon dioxide reduction. However, the molecular-based homogeneous FLP catalytic systems raise the difficulties in product purification and catalyst recovery. Therefore, the development of the heterogeneous catalysts with FLP-like activity is extremely expected.  


Recently, the Qu group in Frontier Institute of Science and Technology and Chang group in the School of Chemical Engineering and Technology, Xi’an Jiaotong University reported the construction of all solid FLP active sites on CeO2 surface and their hydrogenation for alkynes and alkenes. The construction of the solid FLP sites was realized by the surface engineering on the surface defects of nanoceria. Porous nanorods of ceria (PN-CeO2) with a high concentration of surface defects generate the new surface Lewis acidic sites composed of two adjacent surface Ce3+. The neighboring surface lattice oxygen as the Lewis base and the new Lewis acidic sites, analogy to homogeneous FLPs, can easily dissociate H‒H bond with a low energy barrier of 0.17 eV.
A research article entitled “Solid frustrated-Lewis-pair catalysts constructed by regulations on surface defects of porous nanorods of CeO2” has been published in Nature Communications on May 18, one of the most prestigious journals in chemistry.
Prof. Qu’s group focus on the design and applications of multiple scales materials in catalysis including high temperature catalysis, heterogeneous organic catalysis and electro-catalysis (OER and HER). Excellent students are warmly welcome to join us! The link of Prof. Qu’s grouphttp://gr.xjtu.edu.cn/web/yongquan.
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