Partial oxidation of methane has been conducted over CeO2 and it has been found that CeO2 has an extraordinary catalytic activity in the reaction. Its activity was strongly dependent on the CH4/O2 ratio. Total combustion was dominant with stoichiometric feed ratio (CH4/O2 = 2.0) but partial oxidation was favorable with oxygen deficient feed condition. Meanwhile, oscillatory partial oxidation was achieved between the CH4/ O2 ratio of 3.8 and 4.3 and the period depended upon the feed composition. The proposed reaction mechanism is that oxygen vacancies in reduced ceria are supplied with oxygen molecules from the reactant, and then activate adsorbed oxygen, followed by releasing activated oxygen species reacting with methane to produce H2 and CO.
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