Methane decomposition to carbon nanotubes and hydrogen on an alumina supported nickel aerogel catalyst

Lingyu Piao, Yongdan Li, Jiuling Chen, Liu Chang, Jerry Y.S. Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

106 Scopus citations


An alumina supported nickel aerogel catalyst was prepared by the sol-gel method and used in the catalytic decomposition of methane. An in situ thermal balance reactor was employed in the study of the reaction. A number of catalysts prepared by the same procedure with different nickel to aluminum ratio were tested. It has been observed that the catalyst oxide precursor has a NiAl2O4-like structure. The amount of the carbon nanotubes (CNTs) formed before the deactivation of the catalyst increases with the nickel content in the catalyst. CNTs grow in 450-700 °C. TEM micrographs show that the CNTs are curved, with diameters in the range of 10-20 nm. Both the reaction and catalyst reduction conditions have strong influences on the morphology of the CNTs and on the reaction behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)145-155
Number of pages11
JournalCatalysis Today
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - May 15 2002
Externally publishedYes



  • Aerogel
  • Carbon nanotubes
  • Catalytic decomposition of methane
  • Morphology
  • Nickel catalyst
  • Sol-gel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)

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