RSC Adv. 2023 Aug 10;13(34):23991-24002. doi: 10.1039/d3ra02769d. eCollection 2023 Aug 4.
H2 is one of the promising renewable energy sources, but its production and transportation remain challenging. Distributed H2 production using liquid H2 carriers is one of the ideal ways of H2 utilization. Among common H2 carriers, ethanol is promising as it has high H2 content and can be derived from renewable bio-energy sources such as sucrose, starch compounds, and cellulosic biomass. To generate H2 from ethanol, steam reforming of ethanol (SRE) is the most common way, while appropriate catalysts, usually supported metal catalysts, are indispensable. However, the SRE process is quite complicated and always accompanied by various undesirable by-products, causing low H2 yield. Moreover, the catalysts for SRE are easy to deactivate due to sintering and carbon deposition under high reaction temperatures. In recent years, lots of efforts have been made to reveal SRE mechanisms and synthesize catalysts with high H2 yield and excellent stability. Both active metals and supports play an important role in the reaction. This mini-review summarizes the recent progress of SRE catalysts from the view of the impacts of active metals and supports and draws an outlook for future research directions.