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Doctor of Philosophy



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Due to its unique properties and high surface area, Graphene has become a good candidate as an effective solid support for metal catalysts. The Nobel Prize in Physics for 2010 was awarded to Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov "for groundbreaking experiments regarding the two-dimensional material graphene". Microwave-assisted synthesis of various metallic nanostructured materials was investigated for CO oxidation applications. These metallic nanostructured materials were used to convert CO to CO2 as an effective approach for carbon monoxide elimination due to its harmful effect on health and environment. In particular, this dissertation is focusing on palladium as a transition metal that has a unique ability to activate various organic compounds to form new bonds. The prepared graphene-supported metallic nanostructured materials were successfully used to investigate Suzuki cross-coupling reaction as an important reaction in the field of pharmaceutical applications. In this research, nanostructured materials were used as solid support catalysts which showed remarkable improvements in the aspects of size, surface structure, catalytic selectivity, shape and recyclability. The nano porous structure and superparamagnetic behavior of (Fe3O4) nano particles that were used as an effective ingredient in graphene-supported palladium catalyst improved the catalytic activity and the catalyst recyclability simply by using an external magnetic field. This research has been divided into two main categories; the first category is to investigate other metal oxides as a solid support for palladium to be used in CO oxidation catalysis. The second category will focus on improving of solid support systems of palladium – magnetite catalyst to increase recyclability. The final stage of this investigation will study the use of these solid supported metal catalysts in continuous heterogeneous processes under flow reaction conditions. The structural, morphological and physical properties of graphene-based nanocomposites described herein were studied using standard characterization tools such as TEM, SEM, X-ray diffraction, XPS and Raman spectroscopy.


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