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Hollow and Yolk–Shell Co-N-C@SiO2 Nanoreactors: Controllable Synthesis with High Selectivity and Activity for Nitroarene Hydrogenation

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journal contribution
posted on 10.01.2020, 15:36 by Xiaocheng Lan, Babar Ali, Yu Wang, Tiefeng Wang
The use of hollow and yolk–shell nanocomposites is an effective route to enhance catalytic performance. A strategy that allows precise control of the nanocomposites was developed to synthesize novel hollow and yolk–shell SiO2 nanoreactors of Co-N-C@SiO2, which used ZIF-67 as the hard template and also as the source for active sites. A size dependence of the nanoreactor structure was observed. Large size of ZIF-67 gave yolk–shell Y-Co-N-C@SiO2 while small size of crystals gave hollow H-Co-N-C@SiO2. The hydrogenation reaction results showed that the Co-N-C@SiO2 catalyst exhibited a high selectivity (>99%) to aniline and gave an activity (35.3 h–1) ∼3.3 times higher than that of Co/SiO2 (11.8 h–1). The excellent performance was attributed to that Co nanoparticles were doped in the N-C framework where they formed Co-Nx species and that the HSN had a void structure that had a reduced diffusion limitation.