Catalytic mechanisms

A catalytic mechanism is the sequence of elementary reactions by which a catalytic reaction proceeds.

Latest Research and Reviews

  • Research | | open

    The search for robust heterogeneous catalysts for the production of linear α-olefins is still a challenge as they do not show well-defined sites and lack the high selectivity reported for homogeneous counterparts. Here the authors show how the precise engineering of metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) holds promise for a sustainable process.

    • Iker Agirrezabal-Telleria
    • , Ignacio Luz
    • , Manuel A. Ortuño
    • , Mikel Oregui-Bengoechea
    • , Iñaki Gandarias
    • , Núria López
    • , Marty A. Lail
    •  & Mustapha Soukri
  • Research | | open

    Zeolite-catalyzed dehydration of ethanol offers promising perspectives for the sustainable production of ethene, while the initial step of ethanol dehydration is still unclear. Here, the authors report the observation of a triethyloxonium ion intermediate in ethanol dehydration to ethene on H-ZSM-5 by using solid-state NMR spectroscopy.

    • Xue Zhou
    • , Chao Wang
    • , Yueying Chu
    • , Jun Xu
    • , Qiang Wang
    • , Guodong Qi
    • , Xingling Zhao
    • , Ningdong Feng
    •  & Feng Deng
  • Research | | open

    Controlling the reaction path is instrumental for developing efficient catalysts for CO2 hydrogenation. Here, the authors report that the ensemble of Pt single atoms coordinated with oxygen atoms in MIL-101 induces distinct reaction path to improve selective hydrogenation of CO2 into methanol relative to nanocrystal counterparts.

    • Yizhen Chen
    • , Hongliang Li
    • , Wanghui Zhao
    • , Wenbo Zhang
    • , Jiawei Li
    • , Wei Li
    • , Xusheng Zheng
    • , Wensheng Yan
    • , Wenhua Zhang
    • , Junfa Zhu
    • , Rui Si
    •  & Jie Zeng
  • Research | | open

    The triple phase boundary structure in solid-oxide fuel cells largely determines the thermodynamics and kinetics of electrochemical processes therein. Here the authors use atomic-resolution microscopy and reaction dynamics simulation to reveal three discrete hydrogen oxidation reaction pathways.

    • Shu-Sheng Liu
    • , Leton C. Saha
    • , Albert Iskandarov
    • , Takayoshi Ishimoto
    • , Tomokazu Yamamoto
    • , Yoshitaka Umeno
    • , Syo Matsumura
    •  & Michihisa Koyama
  • Research | | open

    The recycling of CO2 into storable chemicals is critical in order to mitigate climate change, although CO2’s inert nature has limited the reduction’s mechanistic considerations. Here, authors pair in-situ spectroscopy with quantum mechanics to elucidate CO2 adsorption on copper and silver surfaces.

    • Yifan Ye
    • , Hao Yang
    • , Jin Qian
    • , Hongyang Su
    • , Kyung-Jae Lee
    • , Tao Cheng
    • , Hai Xiao
    • , Junko Yano
    • , William A. Goddard III
    •  & Ethan J. Crumlin
  • Research |

    For hydrogen to become a direct, portable fuel source, the difficulties with its storage and subsequent release must be addressed. Here ethylene glycol is shown to act as an efficient, reversible liquid-to-liquid hydrogen carrier—particularly attractive due to its theoretical H2 capacity of 6.5 wt%.

    • You-Quan Zou
    • , Niklas von Wolff
    • , Aviel Anaby
    • , Yinjun Xie
    •  & David Milstein
    Nature Catalysis 2, 415-422

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    Strained boronate complexes have now been shown to enable an unprecedented cross-coupling reaction across a C–C σ-bond. Using this approach, highly functionalized cyclobutanes can be prepared with excellent stereocontrol from readily available reagents.

    • Alejandro Parra
    •  & Mariola Tortosa
    Nature Chemistry 11, 104-106
  • News and Views |

    Indirect methods are generally adopted to elucidate complicated mechanisms of transition metal catalysis. Now, a way to directly observe transient manganese species and monitor key reaction steps has been established by using time-resolved multiple-probe spectroscopy.

    • Congyang Wang
    Nature Catalysis 1, 816-817
  • Editorial |

    Models play a significant role in the development of catalysts. However, they are constructed using a reductionist approach and this poses the question of their relevance for the comprehension of physical phenomenon.

    Nature Catalysis 1, 807-808