Atomic-Scale View of VOX-WOX Coreduction on the α-Al2O3 (0001) Surface

Martin E. McBriarty, Gavin P. Campbell, Tasha L. Drake, Jeffrey W. Elam, Peter C. Stair, Donald E. Ellis, Michael J. Bedzyk*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The catalytic activity of oxide-supported vanadium oxide is improved by the presence of tungsten oxide for the selective catalytic reduction of nitric oxides. We propose a mechanism for V-W synergy through studies of the reduction-oxidation behavior of near-monolayer VOX and WOX species grown by atomic layer deposition on the α-Al2O3 (0001) single crystal surface. In situ X-ray standing wave measurements reveal an overlayer of W6+ species that is correlated with the substrate lattice as well as a redox-reversible shift from uncorrelated V5+ to correlated V4+. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and electronic structure calculations show a partial reduction of W6+ in the presence of V4+, improving the Brønsted acidity in mixed V-W catalyst systems. This mechanism of V-W synergy suggests that control of W d-states might be used as a design parameter for Brønsted acid sites in multicomponent oxide catalysts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)16179-16187
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number28
StatePublished - Jul 16 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • General Energy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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