Topics in Catalysis

, Volume 37, Issue 1, pp 17–28 | Cite as

Prediction of Experimental Methanol Decomposition Rates on Platinum from First Principles

  • Shampa Kandoi
  • Jeff Greeley
  • Marco A. Sanchez-Castillo
  • Steven T. Evans
  • Amit A. Gokhale
  • James A. Dumesic
  • Manos Mavrikakis

A microkinetic model for methanol decomposition on platinum is presented. The model incorporates competitive decomposition pathways, beginning with both O–H and C–H bond scission in methanol, and uses results from density functional theory (DFT) calculations [Greeley and Mavrikakis, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 124 (2002) 7193, Greeley and Mavrikakis, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 126 (2004) 3910]. Results from reaction kinetics experiments show that the rate of H2 production increases with increasing temperature and methanol concentration in the feed and is only nominally affected by the presence of CO or H2 with methanol. The model, based on the values of binding energies, pre-exponential factors and activation energy barriers derived from first principles calculations, accurately predicts experimental reaction rates and orders. The model also gives insight into the most favorable reaction pathway, the rate-limiting step, the apparent activation energy, coverages, and the effects of pressure. It is found that the pathway beginning with the C–H bond scission (CH3OH→H2COH→HCOH→CO) is dominant compared with the path beginning with O–H bond scission. The cleavage of the first C–H bond in methanol is the rate-controlling step. The surface is highly poisoned by CO, whereas COH appears to be a spectator species.


microkinetic density functional theory direct methanol fuel cells catalysis platinum methanol decomposition reaction kinetics hydrogen production methanol reforming 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shampa Kandoi
    • 1
  • Jeff Greeley
    • 1
  • Marco A. Sanchez-Castillo
    • 1
  • Steven T. Evans
    • 1
  • Amit A. Gokhale
    • 1
  • James A. Dumesic
    • 1
  • Manos Mavrikakis
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Chemical and Biological EngineeringUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonMadisonUSA

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