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Issue 37, 2009
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XPS study of nitrogen dioxide adsorption on metal oxide particle surfaces under different environmental conditions

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Abstract

The adsorption of nitrogen dioxide on gamma aluminium oxide (γ-Al2O3) and alpha iron oxide (α-Fe2O3) particle surfaces under various conditions of relative humidity, presence of molecular oxygen and UV light has been investigated. X-Ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) is used to monitor the different surface species that form under these environmental conditions. Adsorption of NO2 on aluminum oxide particle surfaces results primarily in the formation of surface nitrate, NO3 with an oxidation state of +5, as indicated by a peak with binding energy of 407.3 eV in the N1s region. An additional minority species, sensitive to the presence of relative humidity and molecular oxygen, is also observed in the N1s region with lower binding energy of 405.9 eV. This peak is assigned to a surface species in the +4 oxidation state. When irradiated with UV light, other species form on the surface. These surface-bound photochemical products all have lower binding energy, between 400 and 402 eV, indicating reduced nitrogen species in the range of N oxidations states spanning +1 to −1. Co-adsorbed water decreases the amount of these reduced surface-bound products while the presence of molecular oxygen completely suppresses the formation of all reduced nitrogen species on aluminum oxide particle surfaces. For NO2 on iron oxide particle surfaces, photoreduction is enhanced relative to γ-Al2O3 and surface bound photoreduced species are observed under all environmental conditions. Complementing the experimental data, N1s core electron binding energies (CEBEs) were calculated using DFT for a number of nitrogen-containing species in the gas phase and adsorbed on an Al8O12cluster. A range of CEBEs is calculated for various nitrogen species in different adsorption modes and oxidation states. These calculated values are discussed in light of the peaks observed in the XPS N1s region and the possible species that form following NO2 adsorption and photoreaction on metal oxide particle surfaces under different conditions of relative humidity, presence of molecular oxygen and UV light.

Graphical abstract: XPS study of nitrogen dioxide adsorption on metal oxide particle surfaces under different environmental conditions

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Publication details

The article was received on 15 Apr 2009, accepted on 14 May 2009 and first published on 02 Jul 2009


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/B907584D
Citation: Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2009,11, 8295-8305
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    XPS study of nitrogen dioxide adsorption on metal oxide particle surfaces under different environmental conditions

    J. Baltrusaitis, P. M. Jayaweera and V. H. Grassian, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2009, 11, 8295
    DOI: 10.1039/B907584D

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