We suggest that the reactivity of Au nanocatalysts can be greatly increased by doping the oxide substrate on which they are placed with an electron donor. To demonstrate this, we perform density functional theory calculations on a model system consisting of a 20-atom gold cluster placed on a MgO substrate doped with Al atoms. We show that not only does such substrate doping switch the morphology of the nanoparticles from the three-dimensional tetrahedral form to the two-dimensional planar form, but it also significantly lowers the barrier for oxygen dissociation by an amount proportional to the dopant concentration. At a doping level of 2.78%, the dissociation barrier is reduced by more than half, which corresponds to a speeding up of the oxygen dissociation rate by five orders of magnitude at room temperature. This arises from a lowering in energy of the s and p states of Au. The d states are also lowered in energy, however, this by itself would have tended to reduce reactivity. We propose that a suitable measure of the reactivity of Au nanoparticles is the difference in energy of sp and d states.
|Titolo:||Substrate doping: A strategy for enhancing reactivity on gold nanocatalysts by tuning sp bands|
|Autori:||Mammen, N.; De Gironcoli, S.; Narasimhan, S.|
|Rivista:||THE JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL PHYSICS|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2015|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.1063/1.4932944|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Journal article|