Imperial College London

Prof Milo Shaffer

Faculty of Natural SciencesDepartment of Chemistry

Professor of Materials Chemistry



+44 (0)20 7594 5825m.shaffer Website




Mr John Murrell +44 (0)20 7594 2845




M221Royal College of ScienceSouth Kensington Campus






BibTex format

author = {Garcia-Trenco, A and Regoutz, A and White, ER and Payne, DJ and Shaffer, MSP and Williams, CK},
doi = {10.1016/j.apcatb.2017.07.069},
journal = {Applied Catalysis B: Environmental},
pages = {9--18},
title = {PdIn intermetallic nanoparticles for the hydrogenation of CO2 to methanol},
url = {},
volume = {220},
year = {2018}

RIS format (EndNote, RefMan)

AB - Direct hydrogenation of CO2 to methanol could offer significant environmental benefits, if efficient catalysts can be developed. Here, bimetallic Pd-In nanoparticles show good performance as catalysts for this reaction. Unsupported nanoparticles are synthesised by the thermal decomposition of Pd(acetate)2 and In(acetate)3 precursors in a high boiling point solvent (squalane), followed by reduction using dilute H2 gas (210 °C). Adjusting the ratio of the two metallic precursors allow access to 5–10 nm nanoparticles with different phase compositions, including metallic Pd(0), In2O3 and intermetallic PdIn. Liquid phase methanol synthesis experiments (50 bar, 210 °C, H2:CO2 = 3:1) identify the intermetallic PdIn nanoparticles as the most efficient. The catalysts exhibit around 70% higher methanol rates (normalised to the overall molar metal content) compared to the conventional heterogeneous Cu/ZnO/Al2O3 catalyst (900 and 540 μmol mmolPdInorCuZnAl−1 h−1, respectively). In addition, the optimum Pd/In catalyst shows an improved methanol selectivity over the whole temperature range studied (190–270 °C), reaching >80% selectivity at 270 °C, compared to only 45% for the reference Cu/ZnO/Al2O3 catalyst. Experiments showed an improvement in stability; the methanol production rate declined by 20% after 120 h run for the optimum PdIn-based compared with 30% for the Cu/ZnO/Al2O3 catalyst (after 25 h). The optimum catalyst consists of ∼8 nm nanoparticles comprising a surface In-enriched PdIn intermetallic phase as characterised by XRD, HR-TEM, STEM-EDX and XPS. Post-catalysis analysis of the optimum catalyst shows that the same PdIn bimetallic phase is retained with only a slight increase in the nanoparticle size.
AU - Garcia-Trenco,A
AU - Regoutz,A
AU - White,ER
AU - Payne,DJ
AU - Shaffer,MSP
AU - Williams,CK
DO - 10.1016/j.apcatb.2017.07.069
EP - 18
PY - 2018///
SN - 0926-3373
SP - 9
TI - PdIn intermetallic nanoparticles for the hydrogenation of CO2 to methanol
T2 - Applied Catalysis B: Environmental
UR -
UR -
UR -
VL - 220
ER -