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ACS Nano ; 15(3): 4018-4033, 2021 Mar 23.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32786209


We report on the shape, composition (from Pt95Zn5 to Pt77Zn23), and surface chemistry of Pt-Zn nanoparticles obtained by reduction of precursors M2+(acac)2- (M2+: Pt2+ and Zn2+) in oleylamine, which serves as both solvent and ligand. We show first that the addition of phenyl ether or benzyl ether determines the composition and shape of the nanoparticles, which point to an adsorbate-controlled synthesis. The organic (ligand)/inorganic (nanoparticles) interface is characterized on the structural and chemical level. We observe that the particles, after washing with ethanol, are coated with oleylamine and the oxidation products of the latter, namely, an aldimine and a nitrile. After exposure to air, the particles oxidize, covering themselves with a few monolayer thick ZnO film, which is certainly discontinuous when the particles are low in zinc. Pt-Zn particles are unstable and prone to losing Zn. We have strong indications that the driving force is the preferential oxidation of the less noble metal. Finally, we show that adsorption of CO on the surface of nanoparticles modifies the oxidation state of amine ligands and attribute it to the displacement of hydrogen adsorbed on Pt. All the structural and chemical information provided by the combination of electron microscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy allows us to give a fairly accurate picture of the surface of nanoparticles and to better understand why Pt-Zn alloys are efficient in certain electrocatalytic reactions such as the oxidation of methanol.