Simultaneous Imaging of Gas Phase over and Surface Reflectance of a Pd(100) Single Crystal during CO Oxidation

A direct correlation between the reaction activity and the surface structure of a catalyst is generally needed to better understand the mechanisms behind the heterogeneous catalysis process. In this work, we employed planar laser-induced fluorescence (PLIF) to spatially resolve the CO2 distribution just above a Pd(100) surface, and simultaneously monitored the optical reflectance of the surface, during CO oxidation. We show that when the reaction is in the mass transfer limited regime, the inhomogeneity of the gas composition over the sample can lead to an inhomogeneity of the surface reflectance change arising from oxide formation and surface roughening. The combination of PLIF and surface reflectance also makes it possible to spatially resolve and simultaneously follow the dynamics of the gas phase and the surface on a subsecond time scale during self-sustained reaction oscillations of a Pd(100) surface, providing insights into the gas–surface interaction.