Hard X-ray Nanotomography of Catalytic Solids at Work


  • The authors acknowledge financial support from The Dow Chemical Company. The Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource (SSRL) is supported by the US Department of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Sciences. We wish to thank to A. van der Eerden (Utrecht University) for his help with the design of the reactor cell. We further acknowledge P. Williams and T. Kao (SSRL) for their help during the data processing and R. Marks (SSRL) for the setting up of the gas flow system.


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A closer look at catalysis: In situ hard X-ray nanotomography has been developed (see picture) as a method to investigate an individual iron-based Fischer–Tropsch-to-Olefins (FTO) catalyst particle at elevated temperatures and pressures. 3D and 2D maps of 30 nm resolution could be obtained and show heterogeneities in the pore structure and chemical composition of the catalyst particle of about 20 μm.