Lowering the Operating Temperature of Gold Acetylene Hydrochlorination Catalysts Using Oxidized Carbon Supports

Samuel Pattisson, Simon R. Dawson, Grazia Malta, Nicholas F. Dummer, Louise R. Smith, Anna Lazaridou, David J. Morgan, Simon J. Freakley, Simon A. Kondrat, Joost J. Smit, Peter Johnston, Graham J. Hutchings

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (SciVal)


The commercialization of gold for acetylene hydrochlorination represents a major scientific landmark. The development of second-generation gold catalysts continues with a focus on derivatives and drop-in replacements with higher activity and stability. Here, we show the influence that the support surface oxygen has on the activity of carbon supported gold catalysts. Variation in the surface oxygen content of carbon is achieved through careful modification of the Hummers chemical oxidation method prior to the deposition of gold. All oxidized carbon-based catalysts resulted in a marked increase in activity at 200 °C when compared to the standard nontreated carbon, with an optimum oxygen content of ca. 18 at % being observed. Increasing oxygen and relative concentration of C-O functionality yields catalysts with light-off temperatures 30-50 °C below the standard catalyst. This understanding opens a promising avenue to produce high activity acetylene hydrochlorination catalysts that can operate at lower temperatures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14086-14095
Number of pages10
JournalACS Catalysis
Issue number22
Early online date2 Nov 2022
Publication statusPublished - 18 Nov 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors thank Johnson Matthey for funding. The authors also thank the Diamond Light Source for access to the B18 beamline for XAS studies (allocation numbers AP15214, SP15151-7, and SP15151-9).


  • acetylene
  • gold
  • hydrochlorination
  • light-off
  • vinyl chloride

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)


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