A Facile Synthesis of MPd (M = Co, Cu) Nanoparticles and Their Catalysis for Formic Acid Oxidation

Mazumder, V, Chi M, Mankin MN, Liu Y, Metin Ö, Sun D, More KL, Sun S.  2012.  A Facile Synthesis of MPd (M = Co, Cu) Nanoparticles and Their Catalysis for Formic Acid Oxidation. Nano Letters. 12(2):1102-1106.


Monodisperse CoPd nanoparticles (NPs) were synthesized and studied for catalytic formic acid (HCOOH) oxidation (FAO). The NPs were prepared by coreduction of Co(acac)2 (acac = acetylacetonate) and PdBr2 at 260 °C in oleylamine and trioctylphosphine, and their sizes (5–12 nm) and compositions (Co10Pd90 to Co60Pd40) were controlled by heating ramp rate, metal salt concentration, or metal molar ratios. The 8 nm CoPd NPs were activated for HCOOH oxidation by a simple ethanol wash. In 0.1 M HClO4 and 2 M HCOOH solution, their catalytic activities followed the trend of Co50Pd50 > Co60Pd40 > Co10Pd90 > Pd. The Co50Pd50 NPs had an oxidation peak at 0.4 V with a peak current density of 774 A/gPd. As a comparison, commercial Pd catalysts showed an oxidation peak at 0.75 V with peak current density of only 254 A/gPd. The synthesis procedure could also be extended to prepare CuPd NPs when Co(acac)2 was replaced by Cu(ac)2 (ac = acetate) in an otherwise identical condition. The CuPd NPs were less active catalysts than CoPd or even Pd for FAO in HClO4 solution. The synthesis provides a general approach to Pd-based bimetallic NPs and will enable further investigation of Pd-based alloy NPs for electro-oxidation and other catalytic reactions.

IMNI Faculty Authors

Profile Photo Shouheng Sun
Co-Director, Institute for Molecular and Nanoscale Innovation
Professor, Department of Chemistry