Catalytic reactions are severely restricted by the strong adsorption of product molecules on the catalyst surface, where promoting desorption of the product and hindering its re-adsorption benefit the formation of free sites on the catalyst surface for continuous substrate conversion1,2. A solution to this issue is constructing a robust nanochannel for the rapid escape of products. We demonstrate here that MFI zeolite crystals with a short b-axis of 90–110 nm and a finely controllable microporous environment can effectively boost the Fischer–Tropsch synthesis to olefins by shipping the olefin molecules. The ferric carbide catalyst (Na-FeCx) physically mixed with a zeolite promoter exhibited a CO conversion of 82.5% with an olefin selectivity of 72.0% at the low temperature of 260 °C. By contrast, Na-FeCx alone without the zeolite promoter is poorly active under equivalent conditions, and shows the significantly improved olefin productivity achieved through the zeolite promoter. These results show that the well-designed zeolite, as a promising promoter, significantly boosts Fischer–Tropsch synthesis to olefins by accelerating escape of the product from the catalyst surface.
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We thank F. Chen for kind help in the transmission electron microscopy characterization. This work was supported by the National Key Research and Development Program of China (2021YFA1500404), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (U21B20101, 21932006, 22102143, 22032005 and 22125304) and the National Postdoctoral Program for Innovative Talents (BX20200291).
This work has been protected by a Chinese patent with the application number 202110715110.6. The authors C.W., W.F., L.W. and F.-S.X. were involved in this patent. The other authors declare no competing interests.
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Wang, C., Fang, W., Liu, Z. et al. Fischer–Tropsch synthesis to olefins boosted by MFI zeolite nanosheets. Nat. Nanotechnol. 17, 714–720 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41565-022-01154-9
Nature Nanotechnology (2022)