Authors: Liu, YA; Li, YW; Anderson, JA; Feng, JT; Guerrero-Ruiz, A; Rodriguez-Ramos, I; McCue, AJ; Li, DQ

J. Catal.. vol: 383. page: 0021-9517.
Date: MAR. 2020.
Doi: 10.1016/j.jcat.2020.01.010.

The partial hydrogenation of but-1-yne and but-2-yne was studied with a view to probing the difference between external and internal alkynes. Catalysts with Pd and Pd4S active phases were prepared on a carbon nanofiber support. Over the simple Pd catalyst over-hydrogenation was common which restricted alkene selectivity greatly – 25-35% depending on temperature. In contrast, the Pd4S active phase offered exceptional alkene selectivity (maximum of 92-93% alkene selectivity for both the external and internal alkyne). DFT calculations were subsequently used to rationalise this difference in product selectivity – sulfur appears to change the geometry of the active site in Pd4S and create a surface which favours alkene desorption relative to over-hydrogenation. This work further emphases the potential of palladium sulfide phases as an alternative to purely metallic palladium catalysts for partial alkyne hydrogenation. Crown Copyright (C) 2020 Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved..