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Nanoparticle Catalysts for Chemical Valorization of Carbon Dioxide


Dr. Dohyung Kim

Advisor: Prof. Peidong Yang, Department of Chemistry, Materials Science and Engineering 

Electrochemical or photochemical conversion of carbon dioxide to value-added products has the potential to fundamentally change our traditional ways of harvesting energy and manufacturing chemical products. Kim's thesis focuses on the use of nanoparticles as catalysts for CO2 conversion and their structural factors affecting catalytic properties are discussed. The shift on the elctrocatalytic behavior of gold-copper nanoparticles by the change of composition and atomic orderedness has been studied to illustrate the catalytic importance of structural precisison down to the atomic level. The ways of interfacing naoparticle electrocatalysts to light absorbing platforms were explored for CO2 valorization using renewable energy sources. Nanoparticles can also be integrated with other materials such as the metal-organic frameoworks or molecular complexes for the creation of a CO2 catalytic system. More importantly, the dynamic restructuring of nanoparticles was utilized to induce favorable electrocatalytic properties for CO2 to conversion multicarbon products. Overall, the worls covered in the thesis not only illustrate the structural complexity of nanoscale catalytic systems but emphasize the need of having a comprehensive understanding of all the factors for the development of CO2 catalysis. 

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