Electronic Structure of Single-Atom Alloys and Its Impact on The Catalytic Activities

ACS Omega. 2022 Jan 6;7(2):1585-1594. doi: 10.1021/acsomega.1c06067. eCollection 2022 Jan 18.

ABSTRACT

Single-atom alloys (SAAs) are promising materials for heterogeneous catalysis due to their unique structure and electronic properties. SAAs have active sites narrowed down to the single-atom level, which combines the advantages of alloy materials and single-site catalysts. Given the unique structural feature of SAAs, their electronic properties can be more flexibly tailored than for their monometallic counterparts, which can be used to effectively control their catalytic activities. One interesting feature commonly observed for SAAs is the lower density of state (DOS) near the Fermi level than their bulk references. Comparing with results for their monometallic bulk reference, the most noticeable electronic property change in SAAs is the narrowing of the valence band, which gives them free-atom-like character. Moreover, the d-band position of both single atoms and their host metals can show a pronounced shift. These changes of electronic structure in SAAs could largely affect the adsorption behavior of adsorbates during the catalytic processes. Close examination of the relationship between electronic structure and catalytic activity can provide useful guidance for rational design of new catalysts with improved performance.

PMID:35071854 | PMC:PMC8771685 | DOI:10.1021/acsomega.1c06067

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