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Nanoscale Chemical Imaging of a Single Catalyst Particle with Tip‐Enhanced Fluorescence Microscopy

Kumar, N; Kalirai, S; Wain, A J; Weckhuysen, B M (2019) Nanoscale Chemical Imaging of a Single Catalyst Particle with Tip‐Enhanced Fluorescence Microscopy. ChemCatChem, 11 (1). pp. 417-423. ISSN 1867-3880

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Determining the active site in real-life solid catalysts remains an intellectual challenge and is crucial for exploring the roads towards their rational design. In the past years various micro-spectroscopic methods have allowed to obtain valuable structure-activity data at the level of a single catalyst particle, even under reaction conditions. Herein, we introduce Tip-Enhanced Fluorescence (TEFL) microscopy as a novel and versatile characterization tool for catalysis research. This has been done by using a Fluid Catalytic Cracking (FCC) catalyst as showcase material. Thin sectioning of industrially used FCC particles together with Brønsted acid-based selective staining has enabled high resolution TEFL mapping of different catalyst regions. Hyperspectral information gained via TEFL microscopy reveal a spatial distribution of Brønsted acidity within individual zeolite domains in different regions of the FCC catalyst particle. Comparison of TEFL measurements from different FCC particles showed significant intra- and inter-particle heterogeneities both in zeolite domain size and chemical reactivity.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: heterogeneous catalysis, fluid catalytic cracking, tip-enhanced fluorescence microscopy, nanoscale chemical imaging, acidity
Subjects: Nanoscience > Surface and Nanoanalysis
Divisions: Chemical, Medical & Environmental Science
Identification number/DOI: 10.1002/cctc.201801023
Last Modified: 17 Apr 2019 14:12
URI: http://eprintspublications.npl.co.uk/id/eprint/8346

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