Departmental Papers (CBE)

Document Type

Journal Article

Date of this Version

September 2002


The interaction of SO2 with model thin film ceria catalysts was studied using temperature programmed desorption (TPD) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). During TPD of ceria samples that had been exposed to SO2 at room temperature, SO2 desorbed in peaks centered at 473, 883 and 963 K. The lower temperature peak is associated with molecularly adsorbed SO2, while the higher temperature peaks are due to decomposition of adsorbed sulfates. XPS results show that at room temperature a small fraction of the adsorbed SO2 is oxidized to SO42- using oxygen supplied by the ceria. This reaction also results in partial reduction of the ceria surface. High coverages of surface sulfate species could be produced by exposing the ceria samples to mixtures of SO2 and O2 at 573 K. In addition to producing gaseous SO2, thermal decomposition of surface sulfates at temperatures above 823 K resulted in the formation of an oxy-sulfide (Ce2O2S) on the ceria surface.


Postprint version. Published in Catalysis Letters, Volume 82, Issues 1-2, September 2002, pages 123-129. The original publication is available at
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ceria, SO2, cerium sulfate, TPD, XPS



Date Posted: 25 January 2006

This document has been peer reviewed.