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BN Nanoparticle/Ag Hybrids with Enhanced Catalytic Activity: Theory and Experiments


Hexagonal boron nitride nanoparticles (BNNPs) with different amounts of boron oxide on their surfaces were used as catalyst carriers. BNNPs/Ag nanohybrids were produced via ultraviolet (UV) decomposition of AgNO3 in a mixture of polyethylene glycol and BNNPs. High temperature (1600°C, 1.5 h) vacuum annealing of BNNPs promoted small size (5-10 nm) Ag nanoparticle (AgNPs) formation on BN surfaces with their narrow size distribution, whereas using BNNPs in as-produced state resulted in large and various size of AgNPs. An increase in B2O3 content on the BNNPs surfaces (up to a certain point) during BNNP pre-annealing in air led to larger amounts of AgNPs on their surfaces. Experimental results were confirmed by theoretical calculations of the adhesion energy of the (111)Ag with (0001)h-BN and (100)B2O3 surfaces. In contrast to nonwettability of h-BN surface by AgNPs, silver well bound to B2O3 under formation of covalent bonding at the interface. Excessive fraction of B2O3, however, was not beneficial in terms of obtaining the optimal contents of AgNPs. Results of catalytic activity tests demonstrated that BNNPs/Ag nanohybrids synthesized using BNNPs with an optimized amount of B2O3 had possessed significantly enhanced catalytic activity compared to those based on BNNPs without or with excessive amounts of oxide. Finally, the catalytic activity of nanohybrids was theoretically analyzed using Density Functional Theory (DFT) calculations.

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Publication details

The article was received on 27 Oct 2017, accepted on 08 Jan 2018 and first published on 09 Jan 2018

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7CY02207G
Citation: Catal. Sci. Technol., 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    BN Nanoparticle/Ag Hybrids with Enhanced Catalytic Activity: Theory and Experiments

    A. Konopatsky, K. L. Firestein, D. V. Leybo, Z. I. Popov, K. Larionov, A. E. Steinman, A. M. Kovalskii, A. Matveev, A. Manakhov, P. B. Sorokin, D. Golberg and D. Shtansky, Catal. Sci. Technol., 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C7CY02207G

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