Open Access Nano Express

Fabrication of a form- and size-variable microcellular-polymer-stabilized metal nanocomposite using supercritical foaming and impregnation for catalytic hydrogenation

Weisheng Liao1, Ben-Zen Wu1, Hungchi Nian1, Hsiang-Yu Chen2, Jya-Jyun Yu3 and KongHwa Chiu1*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Chemistry, National DongHwa University, Shoufeng, Hualien, 97401, Taiwan

2 Department of Chemistry, Chung Yuan Christian University, Chung-Li, Tao-Yuan, 32023, Taiwan

3 Department of Environmental Engineering and Science, Feng Chia University, Taichung, 40724, Taiwan

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2012, 7:283  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-7-283

Published: 31 May 2012

Abstract

This article presents the fabrication of size-controllable and shape-flexible microcellular high-density polyethylene-stabilized palladium nanoparticles (Pd/m-HDPE) using supercritical foaming, followed by supercritical impregnation. These nanomaterials are investigated for use as heterogeneous hydrogenation catalysts of biphenyls in supercritical carbon dioxide with no significant surface and inner mass transfer resistance. The morphology of the Pd/m-HDPE is examined using scanning electron microscopy images of the pores inside Pd/m-HDPE catalysts and transmission electron microscopy images of the Pd particles confined in an HDPE structure. This nanocomposite simplifies industrial design and operation. These Pd/m-HDPE catalysts can be recycled easily and reused without complex recovery and cleaning procedures.

Keywords:
Nanoparticle; Heterogeneous catalysis; Supercritical fluids; Foaming; Impregnation