Highly selective electro-oxidation of glycerol to dihydroxyacetone on platinum in the presence of bismuth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • Youngkook Kwon
  • Yuvraj Birdja
  • Ioannis Spanos
  • Paramaconi Rodriguez
  • Marc T M Koper

Colleges, School and Institutes

External organisations

  • Leiden University
  • Leiden Institute of Chemistry


A carbon supported platinum electrode in a bismuth saturated solution at a carefully chosen potential is capable of oxidizing glycerol to dihydroxyacetone with 100% selectivity. In the absence of bismuth, the primary alcohol oxidation is dominant. Using a combination of online HPLC and in situ FTIR, it is shown that Bi blocks the pathway for primary oxidation but also provides a specific Pt-Bi surface site poised for secondary alcohol oxidation.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)759-764
Number of pages6
JournalACS Catalysis
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 4 May 2012


  • bismuth, dihydroxyacetone, electrocatalysis, glycerol, platinum

ASJC Scopus subject areas