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Pure Appl. Chem., 2008, Vol. 80, No. 11, pp. 2397-2403

Catalytic behavior of unsupported Co materials in the reformation of ethanol to hydrogen: An in situ diffuse reflectance infrared Fourier transform (DRIFT)-mass spectrometry study

Salvador Martí, Narcís Homs, Evandro Brum Pereira and Pilar Ramírez de la Piscina

Department of Inorganic Chemistry and the Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, University of Barcelona, C/Martí i Franquès 1-11, 08028 Barcelona, Spain

Abstract: New unsupported Co catalysts were studied in the ethanol steam-reforming reaction by in situ diffuse reflectance infrared spectroscopy and on-line mass spectrometry (MS) techniques. The initial ethoxy surface species evolved to surface-acyl species and to acetaldehyde intermediate at temperatures ca. 473 K. The subsequent formation of surface-acetate species occurs at ca. 573 K. Further, the acetate species mainly evolve above 573 K to H2 and CO2 products. The route to ketone formation was inhibited on these materials. The presence of surface-hydroxyl groups, which are probably related to the formation of a CoO phase under the reforming conditions, was determined. Alkaline addition shows a beneficial effect on the ethanol steam-reforming over bulk Co catalysts.