Scientific Calendar Event

Starts 12 Jun 2024 11:00
Ends 12 Jun 2024 13:00
Central European Time
Leonardo Building, Luigi Stasi Seminar Room (and via Zoom)

Prasenjit Ghosh
(IISER Pune)

Methane, the main component of natural gas, is one of the major greenhouse gases contributing to global warming. Therefore, capturing methane and converting it to other useful products is highly desirable.
Methane activation is challenging due to the high energy of the C-H bonds and the non-polar, non-reactive nature of the molecule. In this work, using density functional theory based calculations and ab initio thermodynamic analysis, we have studied the role of C-vacancies in TiC(001) surface towards methane activation and its non-oxidative coupling to form C2 hydrocarbons. Our C-vacancy concentration dependent study of CH4 activation shows that (i) the first C-H bond cleavage is facile and less sensitive to the concentration of C-vacancy and (ii) the dissociation of the subsequent ones strongly depend on the vacancy concentration and becomes arduous in presence of fewer vacancies. Amongst the two vacancy concentrations considered in this study, namely, 12.5% and 25%, we find that on the former though the first C-H bond cleavage is facile, the barriers for the subsequent C-H bonds are high suggesting that this might be a good candidate for further C-C coupling studies. Our C-C coupling studies show this catalyst will yield acetylene at around 800 K. However, the rate limiting step is the formation of H2 from the H atoms occupying the C-vacancies, which might block the vacancies thereby deactivating the catalyst.