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J Am Chem Soc. 2012 Dec 5;134(48):19520-3. doi: 10.1021/ja308217w. Epub 2012 Nov 26.

Nitrogen-based catalysts for the electrochemical reduction of CO2 to CO.

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Department of Chemistry, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 600 South Mathews Avenue, Urbana, Illinois 61801, United States.


The synthesis and application of carbon-supported, nitrogen-based organometallic silver catalysts for the reduction of CO(2) is studied using an electrochemical flow reactor. Their performance toward the selective formation of CO is similar to the performance achieved when using Ag as the catalyst, but comparatively at much lower silver loading. Faradaic efficiencies of the organometallic catalyst are higher than 90%, which are comparable to those of Ag. Furthermore, with the addition of an amine ligand to Ag/C, the partial current density for CO increases significantly, suggesting a possible co-catalyst mechanism. Additional improvements in activity and selectivity may be achieved as greater insight is obtained on the mechanism of CO(2) reduction and on how these complexes assemble on the carbon support.


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