A Caltech Library Service

Mechanistic and kinetic studies of the surface chemistry of iridium and ruthenium


Johnson, Dale Fredrick (1994) Mechanistic and kinetic studies of the surface chemistry of iridium and ruthenium. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/0myw-fk78.


Quantitative investigations of the mechanisms and the kinetics of the surface-catalyzed activation of C-H, N-H, C-C, and C-N bonds on the close-packed surfaces of Ir(111) and Ru(001) have been performed. The interaction of CH_3NH_2 with Ru(001) was investigated in ultrahigh vacuum with the techniques of high-resolution electron energy loss spectroscopy and thermal desorption mass spectrometry. Activation of the central C-N bond is observed, but it is less favored than the competing channel of complete dehydrogenation, by a ratio between 2:1 to 3:1. The decomposition mechanism has been characterized with several surface intermediates and gas-phase products identified. A pronounced preference for the activation of C-H over N-H and C-N bonds has been established. Additionally, the kinetics of the initial dissociation of short chain alkanes on Ir(111) has been examined, and the rate parameters of the activation of C-C bonds and primary, secondary, and tertiary C-H bonds have been determined. The formation of primary alkyl products is favored, over most of the experimental temperature range, despite the thermodynamic preference for the activation of individual secondary and tertiary C-H bonds in comparison to individual primary C-H bonds. At higher surface temperatures, the activation of C-C bonds occurs at competitive rates to the C-H reaction channel. The measured deuterium kinetic isotope effect implicates substantial deformation of the terminal methyl group in the transition state of C-C bond cleavage. Finally, the surface structure sensitivity of C-H bond cleavage has been quantified for smooth (111) and corrugated (110) surfaces of iridium and platinum, as well as for step edge defect sites on Ir(111).

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Chemistry
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Chemistry and Chemical Engineering
Major Option:Chemistry
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Weinberg, William Henry
Thesis Committee:
  • Unknown, Unknown
Defense Date:18 May 1994
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:05032013-115316910
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:7663
Deposited On:03 May 2013 20:28
Last Modified:09 Nov 2022 19:20

Thesis Files

PDF - Final Version
See Usage Policy.


Repository Staff Only: item control page