Skip to main content

Ethanol Conversion over La 0.7 Sr 0.3 MnO 3– x (100): Autocatalysis, Adjacent O-Vacancies, Disproportionation, and Dehydrog...

by Bo Chen, Chuanye Xiong, De-en Jiang, Aditya Savara
Publication Type
Journal Name
ACS Catalysis
Publication Date
Page Numbers
12920 to 12931

The mechanism for catalytic conversion of ethanol over La0.7Sr0.3MnO3–x(100) surface to acetaldehyde and ethene was investigated. Pre-exposure temperature-programmed reaction (PE-TPR) experiments were performed in which ethanol was introduced to oxidized or reduced surfaces followed by heating. In particular, sequential PE-TPR experiments were conducted to incrementally and gradually reduce the surface. The products and their ratios were investigated as a function of surface reduction. The data show that acetaldehyde and ethene production is catalyzed with hydrogen abstraction and oxygen abstraction reactions occurring by intermediates in vacancies at various temperatures >400 K. Adsorption of acetaldehyde followed by a temperature-programmed reaction does not produce ethene, indicating that acetaldehyde is not an intermediate to ethene and that the hydrogen and oxygen abstraction from ethanol to ethene are decoupled steps. Further evidence for this mechanistic nuance was obtained using isotopically labeled ethanol (CD3CH2OH), which produces CD3CHO and CD2CH2. The ratio of aldehyde production to alkene production increases with reduction, suggesting that aldehyde is produced from a disproportionation reaction between ethoxy species in adjacent O-vacancies, while ethene is produced from a dehydrogenation reaction with ethoxy species in vacancies without requiring adjacent O-vacancies. Counterintuitively, this finding indicates that the more oxygenated product (aldehyde vs ethene) is favored with more vacancies and that the net alcohol conversion is autocatalytic. Density functional theory calculations were able to find the previously unknown disproportionation pathway between ethoxies in adjacent O-vacancies, and kinetic Monte Carlo simulations support this interpretation by reproducing experimental selectivities. The activation energies for these pathways are estimated as 132 ± 10 kJ/mol for the disproportionation reaction (when occurring between ethoxies in adjacent vacancies) and as 148 ± 11 kJ/mol for the direct dehydrogenation reaction of an ethoxy in a vacancy. Based on these results, a mechanism with operative pathways based on elementary steps in O-vacancies is reported.