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Title: Emulation of chiral hydrogenation catalysts by adsorbtion of small molecules onto Ni surfaces
Author: Nicklin, Richard E. J.
ISNI:       0000 0004 5366 6789
Awarding Body: University of Reading
Current Institution: University of Reading
Date of Award: 2014
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Adsorption of small molecules on the Ni{111} and NiO{111} surfaces is investigated under UHV and elevated pressures (~10-1 mbar) of hydrogen and water. The molecules considered are chosen for their relevance to understanding the mechanism of enantioselective hydrogenation on Raney Nickel modified by chiral molecules. Adsorption of water onto, and its subsequent reaction with, oxygen-covered Ni{111} is dependent on the initial atomic oxygen coverage. An OH species (O1s binding energy 531.5eV), oriented perpendicular to the surface, forms at atomic oxygen coverages <0.25ML. The reaction does not consume all the adsorbed oxygen for coverages ≥0.12ML. The p(2×2) atomic oxygen uperstructure is unreactive, while an OH species is formed on the p(√3×√3) superstructure at binding energy 530.9eV. L-alanine is adsorbed on Ni{111} as a model chiral modifier molecule. At low coverages, alanine forms a presumed tridentate alaninate species for coverages ≥0.11ML at 250K. A minority, bidentate zwitterionic species forms at coverages >0.11ML, but was not observed at 300K. Saturation occurs at 0.25ML. At high alanine coverages (≥0.19ML) and H2 pressure (≥1×10-2 mbar), the tridentate L-alaninate converts to bidentate zwitterionic L-alanine at 300K. Thermal evolution of L-alanine on Ni{111} under varying hydrogen pressures is examined. Adsorption of L-alanine onto hydroxylated NiO{111} at 300K in UHV, mimicking a catalyst surface under aqueous conditions, yields the tridentate alaninate which is immune to the effects of elevated hydrogen pressure. Exposing the L-alanine/Ni{111} adsorption system to water (≤10-1 mbar) oxidises the surface and recreates the L-alanine/hydroxylated NiO{111} system. Pyruvic acid on Ni{111} is examined as a model for hydrogenation substrate adsorption. Behaviour is coverage dependent and several conformations are possible at low coverages (≤0.1ML). Annealing at coverages <0.2ML causes a condensation reaction, releasing water onto the surface. High coverages do not condense and a saturation coverage of ~0.35ML is found.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available