A group consisting of Professor Kazushi Mashima of Osaka University and Kazuhiko Sato, Director of the Research Center for Catalytic Chemistry, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, has succeeded in producing a high-performance catalyst from inexpensive nickel.It may help reduce the manufacturing cost of medicines made with expensive catalysts.

 Various organic compounds are used in familiar places such as pharmaceuticals, synthetic fibers, and plastics.The most important thing in organic synthesis is to freely connect the chains of carbon atoms that form the skeleton.The action of the catalyst is indispensable for forming the chemical bond between these carbon atoms.Various catalysts have been developed so far, but most of them are made from rare and expensive metals such as palladium.It also causes the cost of products to increase, and it is desired to realize catalysts made from inexpensive metals.

 Iron and nickel are metals that are candidates for cheap catalysts.However, it had the drawback of lower performance as a catalyst than precious metals.Professor Mashima et al. Discovered that nickel particles of about 15 nm (1 nanometer = 0.000000001 m) are formed by reacting a nickel compound with an organic substance containing silicon.Further examination of these particles revealed that they had an atomic arrangement (amorphous) different from that of metal crystals.When these amorphous nickel nanoparticles were used as a catalyst for organic synthesis, they showed extremely high performance. ..This is far superior to catalysts made from precious metals.It is known that nickel atoms released from nanoparticles act as catalysts, but further investigation revealed that amorphous particles have the effect of releasing and re-incorporating atoms, which is a catalyst for catalysts. I also found that it was functioning as a storage.

 In the future, we plan to proceed with research to apply this catalyst to various chemical reactions required in actual organic synthesis.If realized, it can be expected that the manufacturing cost of familiar products such as pharmaceuticals can be greatly reduced, and the burden on the environment due to the use of precious metals can be reduced.

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Osaka University is a research-based university with 11 faculties and 23 departments. Since its founding in 1931, with the motto of "living in the region and extending to the world," we have created an outstanding "foundation" and "power" that weaves advanced education and research capabilities, the harmony of faculty and staff, and the weight of tradition and the advantage of Osaka. I have.Taking advantage of these excellent potentials […]

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