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J Am Chem Soc. 2010 Oct 27;132(42):14736-8. doi: 10.1021/ja106283u.

Oxygen precursor to the reactive intermediate in methanol synthesis by Cu-ZSM-5.

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Department of Chemistry, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305, USA.


The reactive oxidizing species in the selective oxidation of methane to methanol in oxygen activated Cu-ZSM-5 was recently defined to be a bent mono(μ-oxo)dicopper(II) species, [Cu(2)O](2+). In this communication we report the formation of an O(2)-precursor of this reactive site with an associated absorption band at 29,000 cm(-1). Laser excitation into this absorption feature yields a resonance Raman (rR) spectrum characterized by (18)O(2) isotope sensitive and insensitive vibrations, νO-O and νCu-Cu, at 736 (Δ(18)O(2) = 41 cm(-1)) and 269 cm(-1), respectively. These define the precursor to be a μ-(η(2):η(2)) peroxo dicopper(II) species, [Cu(2)(O(2))](2+). rR experiments in combination with UV-vis absorption data show that this [Cu(2)(O(2))](2+) species transforms directly into the [Cu(2)O](2+) reactive site. Spectator Cu(+) sites in the zeolite ion-exchange sites provide the two electrons required to break the peroxo bond in the precursor. O(2)-TPD experiments with (18)O(2) show the incorporation of the second (18)O atom into the zeolite lattice in the transformation of [Cu(2)(O(2))](2+) into [Cu(2)O](2+). This study defines the mechanism of oxo-active site formation in Cu-ZSM-5.

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