An efficient and universal solar interfacial photothermal reactor toward liquid phase oxidation

Chen Wu, Wenbin Wang, Kai Zhu, Wenrui Li, Dong Cai, Zhanwei Chen, Peng Wang, Qiuyu Zhang, Hepeng Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Photothermal catalysis has attracted great attention owing to high solar energy utilization efficiency, and great progress has been achieved in gas-phase catalysis. However, photothermal catalysis in liquid-phase shows a limited performance, due to high specific heat capacity of liquid. Herein, an interfacial photothermal catalytic (IPC) strategy applying an IPC leaf was designed for liquid-phase catalysis using benzyl alcohol oxidation as the model reaction. On even ground, the benzaldehyde generation rate (8.7 mmol·gcat-1·h-1) of the IPC system with Ce-doped MnO2 as photothermal catalyst was almost 4.8 times and 3 times of bulk photothermal catalysis and the relative bulk thermal catalysis. Experimental results proved that this excellent catalytic performance could be attributed to both the high temperature achieved and the enhanced lattice oxygen activity by solar irradiation. This IPC system also exhibited good universality and long-term durability. Our work innovatively created a green strategy to obtain fine chemicals with only solar irradiation.
Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAIChE Journal
StatePublished - Dec 13 2022

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2022-12-15
Acknowledgements: This work was financially supported by the Science and Technology Project of Shenzhen (No. JCYJ20190806155814624); the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 22002120) and the Guangdong Basic and Applied Basic Research Foundation (No. 2019A1515110507). The authors are grateful to the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology for very generous financial support. We would also like to thank the Analytical & Testing Center of Northwestern Polytechnical University for SEM and XRD characterizations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Biotechnology
  • Environmental Engineering


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