Authors: Jolla Kullgren, Kersti Hermansson and Peter Broqvist
We use theoretical simulations to study how oxidative and humid environments affect the chemical composition, shape and structure of ceria nanoparticles. Based on our calculations, we predict that small stoichiometric ceria nanoparticles will have a very limited stability range when exposed to these environments. Instead, we find that reduced ceria nanoparticles are stabilized without changing their inherent shape through the adsorption of oxygen molecules in the form of superoxo species and in the form of hydroxo species. Based on our results, we propose a redox-cycle for metastable ceria nanoparticles without the formation of explicit oxygen vacancies, which is important for understanding the low-temperature oxygen chemistry of ceria at the nanoscale.
Proc. of SPIE Vol. 8822, 88220D1 (2013).