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Catalytic reduction of nitrogen to produce ammonia by bismuth-based catalysts: state of the art and future prospects

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Abstract

Ammonia is a key industrial raw material for fertilisers, chemicals and energy. The annual artificial ammonia synthesis via the Haber–Bosch process results in about 2% of global energy consumption and can lead to 1.6% CO2 emission. Hence, it is urgent to develop low-cost and environmentally friendly approaches for artificial ammonia synthesis under ambient conditions. Recently, bismuth (Bi)-based catalysts have attracted great interest due to their excellent nitrogen fixation performance in electrochemical and photocatalytic fields. However, there is still a lack of a comprehensive review on Bi-based nitrogen-fixation materials focusing on their crystal structure, surface engineering and modification methods, which is highly desirable for facilitating their further development towards applications. Herein, we provide an up-to-date review on Bi-based nitrogen-fixation materials and classify them as metallic Bi, bismuth oxide, bismuth oxyhalide, and Bi-based polyoxometalates. Starting from the underlying crystal structure, we analyse the internal electric field, surface engineering and modification methods of Bi-based nitrogen fixation materials. Then, we highlight the latest achievements of Bi-based materials and reveal the challenges and obstacles in the development and application of Bi-based nitrogen-fixation materials. More importantly, this review presents the surface and structure engineering strategies, and future directions for the development of new Bi-based nitrogen-fixation materials under ambient conditions.

Graphical abstract: Catalytic reduction of nitrogen to produce ammonia by bismuth-based catalysts: state of the art and future prospects

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Article information


Submitted
19 Oct 2019
Accepted
16 Dec 2019
First published
16 Dec 2019

Mater. Horiz., 2020, Advance Article
Article type
Minireview

Catalytic reduction of nitrogen to produce ammonia by bismuth-based catalysts: state of the art and future prospects

Q. Hao, C. Liu, G. Jia, Y. Wang, H. Arandiyan, W. Wei and B. Ni, Mater. Horiz., 2020, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C9MH01668F

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