Single atomic site catalysts: synthesis, characterization, and applications
Single atomic site catalysts (SASCs) have attracted great attention in heterogenous catalysis due to their maximized atomic utilization and unique electronic structure. This feature article summarizes the recent contributions of the authors in the synthesis, characterization, and applications of SASCs. Firstly, we disclose the tricks of our recent progress in the synthesis of SASCs, including impregnation of metal precursors on defect-rich supports, pyrolysis of polymer-encapsulated metals and isolation of contiguous atoms by alloying. Then, we show several key characterization technologies to identify the geometric and electronic structure of SASCs, and reveal the advantages and disadvantages of these characterization technologies. Finally, the applications of the SASCs in heterogenous catalysis are presented, which are classified into electrocatalysis and thermocatalysis, and the structure–function relationships are disclosed.