Construction of Au–Pd alloy shells for enhanced catalytic performance toward alkyne semihydrogenation reactions†
This communication reports an efficient bimetallic catalyst by incorporating Au atoms onto the surface of palladium nanocrystals via a simple solution phase surface alloying process. While retaining the original surface structure of Pd, the surface alloy catalyst shows the highest activity and the best selectivity toward alkyne semihydrogenation reactions in comparison to commercial Pd/C and Lindlar catalysts. This simple surface alloying process could be easily extended to the optimization of commercial Pd/C catalysts to significantly improve their catalytic performance. The surface modification approach proposed in this work not only provides a new direction in engineering efficient metal nanocatalysts for fine chemical industries, but also improves our understanding of bimetallic nanocrystal surfaces.