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Allen Apblett

Leading speaker for international catalysis conference 2017 - Allen Apblett

Title: Single Source Precursor Approach for the Synthesis of Bimetallic Molybdate Catalysts

Allen Apblett

Oklahoma State University, United States


Allen Apblett received a B.Sc.(Honours) degree from The University of New Brunswick in 1984 and a Ph.D. from The University of Calgary in 1989 under the supervision of Dr. Tristam Chivers. He was awarded a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Postdoctoral Fellowship that he took up at Harvard University in Dr. Andrew Barron’s research group. In 1991 he became an assistant professor at Tulane University and then moved to Oklahoma State University in 1997 where he is a full professor. He is a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors, the American Chemical Society and the American Ceramic Society.


Bimetallic molybdenum-containing oxides have a wide range of applications including numerous catalytic reactions. Previous work has shown that the preparation method has a marked influence on the physical and chemical properties of these kinds of metal oxides. Accordingly, a facile, low-temperature synthetic approach for the preparation of molybdenum-containing bimetallic oxide catalysts with controlled shape and chemical composition via the pyrolysis of water-based bimetallic single-source precursors will be reported. The precursors result from the reaction of aqueous solutions of alkaline earth metals or divalent first row transition metal salts of 2-hydroxycarboxylic acids (eg. lactic acid, 2-methyllactic acid, mandelic acid, and benzilic acid) with solid MoO3. They crystalize with the exact ratio of divalent metal to molybdenum for formation of MMoO4. TGA and XRD analysis has shown that the thermal decomposition of these single source bimetallic precursors produces the target materials. Several potential catalytic reactions will be discussed including oxidative dehydrogenation and production of petrochemicals via pyrolysis of biomass.

Audience Take away:

How single source precursors allow the synthesis of metastable more highly active catalysts 
• How single source precursors permit the synthesis of metastable more highly active catalysts 
•  How single source precursors enable the search for novel catalysts
•  Novel catalysts for biomass pyrolysis to produce fuels and commodity chemicals