Symposium NM04—Porous Materials and Nanocomposites for Catalysis
Porous materials and nanoparticles (including sub nm clusters) contribute to the field of catalysis greatly with their high contact surface areas, unique size dependent properties and well-defined, single crystalline nature. When in use, the colloidal dispersion and unobstructed surface of the nanoparticles are integral for their superior catalytic properties. But because of their high surface energy, NPs tend to aggregate without surfactant protection. And in catalysis, surfactants block active sites, fatally hindering the expected activity. High surface-area materials, particularly porous materials, could provide large surface and spatial confinement for applications like catalysis, and also to disperse the NPs and prevent the nanoparticles from aggregating during catalytic reactions. Furthermore, the electronic and steric pore environment of the supports could offer diverse interactions with the immobilized NPs and therefore modify the catalytic properties.
Studies on the porous materials and their nanocomposites with NPs have received considerable attention recently and there is a need for an in depth discussion to systematically understand how catalysis take place in the confined surfaces, and what procedures work best to immobilize nanoparticles. A critical interest is in their activities compared to free nanoparticles and the new catalytic reactions because of the synergistic effect coming from the porous support and the encapsulated nanoparticle. The symposium will have a session or two on synthesis and characterization of porous materials and their nanocomposites. Gas phase catalytic applications will form another session. Liquid, petrochemical industry related applications would be another. A catalytic water treatment session will also be a separate session. Electrochemical applications such as lithium ion batteries or dye-sensitized solar cells will be another session. Interdisciplinary topics related to physics, materials science and engineering will be connected by invited talks in order to accelerate the development of these materials toward applications.