Robust iron-carbide nanoparticles supported on alumina for sustainable production of gasoline-range hydrocarbons
The high-temperature Fischer–Tropsch synthesis reaction has been exploited to selectively produce lower-olefins and gasoline-range hydrocarbons (C5–C12) from a mixture of carbon monoxide and hydrogen, using iron-based catalysts. For this reaction, improving the selectivity and stability of the catalyst has been a major challenge, as has enhancing the activity. In the present work, we introduce iron-carbide nanoparticles supported on a porous gamma-alumina framework as a robust catalyst, prepared via a simple melt infiltration process and subsequent thermal treatment, for high-temperature Fischer–Tropsch synthesis. The iron-carbide/alumina catalyst showed much better catalytic performance, with a higher stability for producing gasoline-range hydrocarbon products, than did iron-carbide/mesoporous silica (SBA-15) and iron-carbide/activated carbon (AC).