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Kinetically Controlled Synthesis of Rhodium Nanocrystals with Different Shapes and a Comparison Study of Their Thermal and Ca...

Publication Type
Journal Name
Journal of the American Chemical Society
Publication Date
Page Numbers
6293 to 6302

We report the synthesis of Rh nanocrystals with different shapes by controlling the kinetics involved in the growth of preformed Rh cubic seeds. Specifically, Rh nanocrystals with cubic, cuboctahedral, and octahedral shapes can all be obtained from the same cubic seeds under suitable reduction kinetics for the precursor. The success of such a synthesis also relies on the use of a halide-free precursor to avoid oxidative etching, as well as the involvement of a sufficiently high temperature to remove Br– ions from the seeds while ensuring adequate surface diffusion. The availability of Rh nanocrystals with cubic and octahedral shapes allows for an evaluation of the facet dependences of their thermal and catalytic properties. The data from in situ electron microscopy studies indicate that the cubic and octahedral Rh nanocrystals can keep their original shapes up to 700 and 500 °C, respectively. When tested as catalysts for hydrazine decomposition, the octahedral nanocrystals exhibit almost 4-fold enhancement in terms of H2 selectivity relative to the cubic counterpart. As for ethanol oxidation, the order is reversed, with the cubic nanocrystals being about three times more active than the octahedral sample.