PdCx nanocrystals with tunable compositions for alkyne semihydrogenation†
The palladium carbide (PdCx) material has shown great promise as an efficient catalyst for alkyne semihydrogenation. Difficulties in preparing stable PdCx catalysts have been recognized as the main obstacle. Here, we synthesized a highly stable and durable class of PdCx nanocrystals by treating pre-formed Pd nanocrystals with glucose under hydrothermal conditions. The C/Pd atomic ratios in the resultant PdCx nanocrystals can be varied from 0.04 to 0.18, simply by changing the reaction time. The catalytic results for semihydrogenation of 4-ethynyl-1,1′-biphenyl show that PdC0.18 nanocrystals exhibit an activity with a turnover frequency as high as 7896 h−1, ∼7.6 and ∼38 times higher than that of commercial Pd/C and Lindlar catalysts, respectively, as well as a selectivity of >99%.