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Title: Theoretical Insights into Methane C–H Bond Activation on Alkaline Metal Oxides

Here, we investigate the role of alkaline metal oxides (AMO) (MgO, CaO, and SrO) in activating the C–H bond in methane. We also use Density Functional Theory (DFT) and microkinetic modeling to study the catalytic elementary steps in breaking the C–H bond in methane and creating the methyl radical, a precursor prior to creating C2 products. We also study the effects of surface geometry on the catalytic activity of AMO by examining terrace and step sites. We observe that the process of activating methane depends strongly on the structure of the AMO. When the AMO surface is doped with an alkali metal, the transition state (TS) structure has a methyl radical-like behavior, where the methyl radical interacts weakly with the AMO surface. In this case, the TS energy scales with the hydrogen binding energy. On pure AMO, the TS interacts with AMO surface oxygen as well as the metal atom on the surface, and consequently the TS energy scales with the binding energy of hydrogen and methyl. We study the activity of AMO using a mean-field microkinetic model. The results indicate that terrace sites have similar catalytic activity, with the exception of MgO(100). Step sites bind hydrogen more strongly, makingmore » them more active, and this confirms previously reported experimental results. We map the catalytic activity of AMO using a volcano plot with two descriptors: the methyl and the hydrogen binding energies, with the latter being a more significant descriptor. The microkinetic model results suggest that C–H bond dissociation is not always the rate-limiting step. At weak hydrogen binding, the reaction is limited by C–H bond activation. At strong hydrogen binding, the reaction is limited due to poisoning of the active site. We found an increase in activity of AMO as the basicity increased. Finally, the developed microkinetic model allows screening for improved catalysts using simple calculations of the hydrogen binding energy.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [2] ; ORCiD logo [2]
  1. SUNCAT Center for Interface Science and Catalysis, Stanford, CA (United States). Dept. of Chemical Engineering
  2. SUNCAT Center for Interface Science and Catalysis, Stanford, CA (United States). Dept. of Chemical Engineering; SLAC National Accelerator Lab., Menlo Park, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
AC02-76SF00515
Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Journal of Physical Chemistry. C
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 121; Journal Issue: 30; Journal ID: ISSN 1932-7447
Publisher:
American Chemical Society
Research Org:
SLAC National Accelerator Lab., Menlo Park, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
37 INORGANIC, ORGANIC, PHYSICAL, AND ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY
OSTI Identifier:
1390631