Monodisperse, nanoporous ceria microspheres embedded with Pt nanoparticles: general facile synthesis and catalytic application†
A monodisperse Pt/ceria hybrid with controlled nanoporous structure was fabricated with the aid of poly(glycidyl methacrylate-co-ethylene glycol dimethacrylate) microspheres as a hard template. Functional groups on the polymer microspheres interacted with Pt species and then cerium precursors were impregnated into the microsphere pores through a sol–gel method. Porous ceria microspheres embedded with uniform and fine Pt nanoparticles formed after removal of the polymer templates by calcination. The hierarchical Pt/ceria hybrid possesses catalytic activity, excellent stability and ease of recyclability. For example, a highly efficient catalytic reduction of 4-nitrophenol (4-NP) with sodium borohydride was accomplished. This facile and general synthetic method could be extended to other novel metal/oxide hybrid combinations.