Thermocatalytic Hydrogenation of CO2 to Methanol Using Cu-ZnO Bimetallic Catalysts Supported on Metal–Organic Frameworks

Zama G. Duma, Xoliswa Dyosiba, John Moma, Henrietta W. Langmi, Benoit Louis, Ksenia Parkhomenko, Nicholas M. Musyoka

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The thermocatalytic hydrogenation of carbon dioxide (CO2 ) to methanol is considered as a potential route for green hydrogen storage as well as a mean for utilizing captured CO2, owing to the many established applications of methanol. Copper–zinc bimetallic catalysts supported on a zirconium-based UiO-66 metal–organic framework (MOF) were prepared via slurry phase impregnation and benchmarked against the promoted, co-precipitated, conventional ternary CuO/ZnO/Al2O3 (CZA) catalyst for the thermocatalytic hydrogenation of CO2 to methanol. A decrease in crystallinity and specific surface area of the UiO-66 support was observed using X-ray diffraction and N2-sorption isotherms, whereas hydrogen-temperature-programmed reduction and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy revealed the presence of copper active sites after impregnation and thermal activation. Other characterisation techniques such as scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and thermogravimetric analysis were employed to assess the physicochemical properties of the resulting catalysts. The UiO-66 (Zr) MOF-supported catalyst exhibited a good CO2 conversion of 27 and 16% selectivity towards methanol, whereas the magnesium-promoted CZA catalyst had a CO2 conversion of 31% and methanol selectivity of 24%. The prepared catalysts performed similarly to a CZA commercial catalyst which exhibited a CO2 conversion and methanol selectivity of 30 and 15%. The study demonstrates the prospective use of Cu-Zn bimetallic catalysts supported on MOFs for direct CO2 hydrogenation to produce green methanol.

Original languageEnglish
Article number401
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • CO hydrogenation
  • bimetallic catalysts
  • catalysis
  • metal–organic frameworks
  • methanol economy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Environmental Science (all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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