Role of alkali metal in a highly active Pd/alkali/Fe2O 3 catalyst for water gas shift reaction

Ryo Watanabe, Yuji Sakamoto, Keisuke Yamamuro, Sakurako Tamura, Eiichi Kikuchi, Yasushi Sekine*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Pd/K/Fe2O3 catalyst shows high activity for water gas shift (WGS) reaction. The K/Pd molar ratio on the catalyst has a remarkable effect on WGS activity. The optimum K/Pd molar ratio is about 2. In this study, to clarify the role of alkali metal (potassium), WGS activities of Pd/alkali/Fe2O3 (alkali: Li, Na, K or Cs) catalysts were investigated and the reaction mechanism over the Pd/K/Fe2O 3 catalyst was examined with transient response analyses using a concentration jump method with a quadrupole mass spectrometer (Q-Mass). Results showed that the addition of alkali metals such as Na, K and Cs drastically enhanced WGS activity, except for Li-loaded catalyst. WGS reaction over the highly active Pd/K/Fe2O3 catalyst was found to proceed via reduction-oxidation (redox) using lattice oxygen. Thereby, CO was oxidized by lattice oxygen in Fe2O3. The consumed lattice oxygen was regenerated by H2O. The results of CO-TPR revealed that oxidation of CO by lattice oxygen were enhanced by K, Cs or Na addition. H2-TPR results showed that reduction of Fe2O3 was suppressed by an increment of loading amount of potassium, which brought a high stability for the WGS reaction. The result of CO/H2O-TPR showed that steam can promote the regeneration of consumed lattice oxygen. The synergistic effect brought a high release ability of lattice oxygen for CO oxidation and also high regenerating ability of consumed lattice oxygen by H2O to produce hydrogen, to the Pd/K/Fe2O3 catalyst. It enabled high catalytic performance of the Pd/K/Fe2O3 catalyst with K/Pd molar ratio of 2.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalApplied Catalysis A: General
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Apr 24


  • Alkali metal addition
  • Hydrogen production
  • Lattice oxygen
  • Redox
  • Water gas shift

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Process Chemistry and Technology


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