Volume 89 Issue 50 | p. 26 | Concentrates
Issue Date: December 12, 2011

Carbon Monoxide Boosts Gold Catalysis

Classic catalyst poison unexpectedly found to enhance electrocatalytic reaction
Department: Science & Technology
Keywords: gold, catalysis, catalyst, electrocatalyst, electrochemistry

Carbon monoxide adsorbed on gold enhances the precious metal’s ability to catalyze oxidation of alcohols in an electrochemical cell, according to researchers at Leiden University, in the Netherlands (Nat. Chem., DOI: 10.1038/nchem.1221). CO is a classic example of a poison to many transition-metal catalysts because it typically binds strongly to metal active sites, denying access to reactant molecules. . . .

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