Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 54, Issue 17, pp 11400–11416 | Cite as

Ethanol steam reforming: understanding changes in the activity and stability of Rh/MxOy catalysts as function of the support

  • Thenner S. RodriguesEmail author
  • Felipe A. e Silva
  • Eduardo G. Candido
  • Anderson G. M. da Silva
  • Rafael dos S. Geonmonond
  • Pedro H. C. Camargo
  • Marcelo Linardi
  • Fabio C. Fonseca
Chemical routes to materials


We reported herein a systematic investigation on how the nature of the support affected the catalytic performances of Rh nanoparticles. The prepared catalysts were denoted as Rh/MxOy, where M corresponded to Ce, Ti, Si, Zn, and Al, and Rh was Rh3+ reduction to Rh nanoparticles on the surface of oxides. This strategy was performed in a single step using urea as a mediator and in the absence of any other stabilizer or capping agent. The Rh nanoparticles displayed relatively similar sizes, shapes, and uniform distribution over the supports, differing only in terms of the nature of the support. This strongly affected the metal–support interaction between Rh nanoparticles and the respective oxides, leading to significant differences in their catalytic performances toward the ethanol steam reforming. Here, not only the catalytic activity (in terms of ethanol conversion) was affected, but both the selectivity and stability were also influenced by the nature of the oxide support. Interestingly, the reaction paths as well as the deactivation profile were completely changed as function of the employed support. Such differences were associated with differences in the oxygen storage, oxygen mobility, and acidity/basicity of the supports. We believe that our results can contribute to the development and understanding of Rh-supported catalysts for the applications toward gas-phase transformations such as the ethanol steam reforming reaction.



This work was supported by FAPESP (Grant Nos. 2014/09087-4, 2014/50279-4, and 2015/26308-7). F.C.F, M.L., and P.H.C.C. thank the CNPq for their research fellowships. T.S.R. (scholarship 2017/04929-5) and A.G.M.S. thank FAPESP for their fellowships. E.G.C. and F.A.S. thank CNPq for their fellowships. R.S.G. thanks CAPES for his fellowship.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest. P.H.C. Camargo is an editor of this journal. He was not involved in any aspect of the review process and not permitted to see any information about the review process on the editorial management system.

Supplementary material

10853_2019_3660_MOESM1_ESM.docx (6.6 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 6796 kb)


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Copyright information

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

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thenner S. Rodrigues
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Felipe A. e Silva
    • 1
    • 2
  • Eduardo G. Candido
    • 1
  • Anderson G. M. da Silva
    • 3
  • Rafael dos S. Geonmonond
    • 3
  • Pedro H. C. Camargo
    • 3
  • Marcelo Linardi
    • 1
  • Fabio C. Fonseca
    • 1
  1. 1.Instituto de Pesquisas Energéticas e Nucleares, IPEN-CNEN/SPSão PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Nanotechnology Engineering Program, Alberto Luiz Coimbra Institute for Graduate Studies and Research in Engineering, COPPEFederal University of Rio de JaneiroRio de JaneiroBrazil
  3. 3.Departamento de Química Fundamental, Instituto de QuímicaUniversidade de São PauloSão PauloBrazil

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