[Nature Catalysis] Sulfur vacancy-rich MoS2 as a catalyst for the hydrogenation of CO2 to methanol
Abstract: The low-temperature hydrogenation of CO2 to methanol is of great significance for the recycling of this greenhouse gas to valuable products, however, it remains a great challenge due to the trade-off between catalytic activity and selectivity. Here, we report that CO2 can dissociate at sulfur vacancies in MoS2 nanosheets to yield surface-bound CO and O at room temperature, thus enabling a highly efficient low-temperature hydrogenation of CO2 to methanol. Multiple in situ spectroscopic and microscopic characterizations combined with theoretical calculations demonstrated that in-plane sulfur vacancies drive the selective hydrogenation of CO2 to methanol by inhibiting deep hydrogenolysis to methane, whereas edge vacancies facilitate excessive hydrogenation to methane. At 180 °C, the catalyst achieved a 94.3% methanol selectivity at a CO2 conversion of 12.5% over the in-plane sulfur vacancy-rich MoS2 nanosheets, which notably surpasses those of previously reported catalysts. This catalyst exhibited high stability for over 3,000 hours without any deactivation, rendering it a promising candidate for industrial application.