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Surface-dependent activity of model CoMoS hydrotreating catalysts

Abstract : The current environmental and industrial contexts require constant revision and improvement of hydrotreating processes for obtaining cleaner (bio)fuels through the development of supported transition metal sulfide (TMS) catalysts. The present work proposes a surface-science approach to describe the surface-dependent genesis of the cobalt-promoted active phase (CoMoS) supported on α-Al2O3 single crystals used as surrogates of the industrial γ-Al2O3 support. Co-Mo precursor solutions are deposited by aqueous-phase impregnation onto four α-Al2O3 single crystals of C(0001), A, M , and R orientations, which display specific OH sorption sites. The model catalysts are characterized in the oxide and sulfide states by XPS, AFM, and TEM revealing a surface dependent sulfidation and dispersion as a result of metal-support interactions of diverse nature. The surfaces can be ranked following metal-support interactions of increasing strength C(0001) < A, M < R in good agreement with model non-promoted catalysts. However, AFM and TEM imaging also reveal that cobalt incorporation leads to an increase in the stacking of CoMoS particles with respect to non-promoted catalysts. The activity of the model catalysts in thiophene hydrodesulfurization cannot be simply related to the common features of the active phase (sulfidation, dispersion, promotion extent) but a volcano-shape curve is obtained when plotting the activity as a function of metal-support interactions. These results suggest that high activity is obtained on surfaces with intermediate metal-support interactions that lead to an optimal metal-sulfur bond energy in agreement with the Sabatier principle. Transposing these results to the traditional γ-Al2O3 support suggests an enhanced activity of the (1 0 0) facet, which can lead to the development of improved supports for hydrotreating catalysts.
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https://hal-ifp.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-03597887
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Submitted on : Friday, March 4, 2022 - 2:50:29 PM
Last modification on : Friday, April 1, 2022 - 3:54:51 AM

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Ricardo Garcia de Castro, Elodie Devers, Mathieu Digne, Anne-Félicie Lamic-Humblot, Gerhard Pirngruber, et al.. Surface-dependent activity of model CoMoS hydrotreating catalysts. Journal of Catalysis, Elsevier, 2021, 403, pp.16-31. ⟨10.1016/j.jcat.2021.01.026⟩. ⟨hal-03597887⟩

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