Activation of carbon dioxide is the most important step in its conversion into valuable chemicals. Surfaces of stable oxide with a low work function may be promising for this purpose. Here we report that the surfaces of the inorganic electride [Ca24Al28O64]4+(e -)4 activate and split carbon dioxide at room temperature. This behaviour is attributed to a high concentration of localized electrons in the near-surface region and a corrugation of the surface that can trap oxygen atoms and strained carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide molecules. The [Ca 24Al28O64]4+(e-) 4 surface exposed to carbon dioxide is studied using temperature-programmed desorption, and spectroscopic methods. The results of these measurements, corroborated with ab initio simulations, show that both carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide adsorb on the [Ca24Al 28O64]4+(e-)4 surface at RT and above and adopt unusual configurations that result in desorption of molecular carbon monoxide and atomic oxygen upon heating.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)