Multicomponent Co-based sol–gel catalysts for dry/steam reforming of methane

  • Sholpan S. ItkulovaEmail author
  • Yerzhan A. Boleubayev
  • Kirill A. Valishevskiy
Original Paper: Sol-gel and hybrid materials for catalytic, photoelectrochemical and sensor applications


The multicomponent Со–Pt–Zr/Al2O3 and Со–Pt–Zr–La/Al2O3 catalysts were prepared by the sol–gel method. The modified Pechini method was used as a sol–gel approach to synthesize a system containing Co, Pt, Zr, and La. The sol–gel materials prepared by such a manner were incorporated into alumina in order to form the catalyst granules. The physicochemical properties of the catalysts were studied by a number of methods (TEM, SEM, BET, XRD, H2-TPR). It was found that the synthesized multicomponent catalysts are highly dispersed systems composed of metal oxides and various microalloys such as the bimetallic Co–Pt and perovskite type structures—LaCoO3 and LaAlO3 having mainly the particle size < 10 nm. The catalytic behaviour of the the new sol–gel materials was tested in dry reforming (DRM), steam reforming (SRM) and combined CO2-Steam reforming of methane (bireforming, BRM) using a feed with a ratio of CO2/CH4/H2O = 0 ÷ 1/1/0 ÷ 1.5 over the temperature interval of 300–800 °C, P = 0.1 MPa, and GHSV varied within 1000–4000 h−1. The synthesized sol–gel catalysts performed the high activity, selectivity, and stability in all processes: DRM, BRM, and SRM with producing syngas with varied ratio of H2/CO depending on a feed composition. Thus, H2/CO ratio is varied within 0.9–4.4 while steam amount added to CH4-CO2 feed is grown from 0 to 1.5 volume parts. Almost complete methane conversion occurs at T = 750–800 °C. The long-term continuous testing of the Co–Pt–Zr–La/Al2O3 catalyst confirmed its stable work in methane conversion by carbon dioxide and/or steam for in total >200 h.


  • Со–Pt–Zr(La)/Al2O3 catalysts were synthesized by the modified Pechini sol–gel method.

  • The sol-made catalyst is a highly dispersed system composed of metal oxides and microalloys – Co–Pt, LaCoO3 and LaAlO3.

  • The sol–gel made catalysts perform the high activity and selectivity in syngas production by CH4 conversion by CO2 and/or steam.

  • At relatively low temperature, 700–800 °C, the extent of CH4 conversion is 90–99% depending on a feed composition.

  • The catalyst is very stable and does not lose the activity for in total >200 h.


Pechini sol-gel method Co-based catalysts Dry, Steam reforming of methane Bireforming of methane Syngas 



The authors wish to thank the Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Kazakhstan for sponsoring this research (Programme # PCF_BR05236739). Special thanks to the Laboratory of the Physico-Chemical Methods of the Catalyst Analysis of IFCE for providing the catalyst study.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.D.V. Sokolsky Institute of FuelCatalysis and ElectrochemistryAlmatyKazakhstan

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