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CO₂ electroreduction at bare and Cu-decorated Pd pseudomorphic layers: catalyst tuning by controlled and indirect supporting onto Au(111)

Aneta Januszewska, Rafal Jurczakowski, Pawel J Kulesza
Langmuir: the ACS Journal of Surfaces and Colloids 2014 December 2, 30 (47): 14314-21
25350872
We report here the results of electrochemical studies on CO2 electroreduction at multilayered catalyst composed of the monatomic layer of copper covering palladium overlayers (0.8-10 monolayers) deposited on the well-defined Au(111) surface. These multilayered systems were obtained by successive underpotential deposition steps: Pd on Au(111) as well as Cu on Pd/Au(111). Low index orientation of Au substrate was chosen to compare Pd overlayers with bulk Pd(111), which is known to reduce CO2 to CO adsorbates in acidic solutions. The process of CO2 electroreduction was studied by using classical transient electrochemical methods. Catalytic activity of bare Pd layers was investigated in acidic and neutral solutions. In the latter case, much higher activity of Pd overlayers was observed. The results showed that the palladium layer thickness significantly changed the catalytic activities of both bare Pd overlayers and the one Cu monolayer covered electrodes toward CO2 electroreduction. Results show that catalytic activity can be finely tuned by using the multilayered near-surface-alloy approach.

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