A constraint to industrial implementation of gold-catalyzed alkyne hydrogenation is that the catalytic activity was always inferior to those of other noble metals. In this work, gold was supported on graphene oxide (Au/GO) and used in a hydrogenation application. A 99% selectivity toward styrene with a 99% conversion in the hydrogenation of phenylacetylene was obtained at 60 °C, which is 100 to 200 °C lower than optimal temperatures in most previous reports on Au catalysts. A series of gold- and palladium-based reference catalysts were tested under the same conditions for phenylacetylene hydrogenation, and the performance of Au/GO was substantiated by studying the role of functionalized GO in governing the geometrical structure and thermal stability of supported Au nanoparticles under reaction conditions.
- Graphene oxide
- Phenylacetylene hydrogenation
- Low temperatures
- Low coordination sites