Structure and decomposition pathways of vinyl acetate on Pd(1 1 1)

Florencia Calaza, Dario Stacchiola, M. Neurock, Wilfred T. Tysoe

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The surface chemistry of vinyl acetate on clean Pd(1 1 1) is explored experimentally in ultrahigh vacuum using reflection absorption infrared spectroscopy (RAIRS) and temperature-programmed desorption (TPD) combined with density functional theory (DFT) calculations. The relative intensities of the vibrational features of a vinyl acetate overlayer are in good agreement with the structure calculated by DFT. Furthermore, the calculated heat of adsorption of vinyl acetate (63.4 kJ/mol) is in excellent agreement with the measured desorption activation energy (65 ± 7 kJ/mol). The thermal decomposition pathways of adsorbed vinyl acetate are relatively complex involving initial cleavage of the O-acetyl or O-vinyl bonds to form either vinyloxy and acetyl, or acetate and vinyl species, respectively on the surface. The acetate thermally decomposes to desorb methane at ∼260 K, while the acetyl and vinyloxy species isomerize and react to form acetaldehyde or methane. Ethylidyne is formed, and adsorbed CO either desorbs or oxidizes to CO2 at ∼450 K.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)263-275
Number of pages13
JournalSurface Science
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Dec 20 2005

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We gratefully acknowledge support of this work by the U.S. Department of Energy, Division of Chemical Sciences, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, under Grant No. DE-FG02-92ER14289.


  • Infrared spectroscopy
  • Pd(1 1 1)
  • Temperature-programmed desorption
  • Vinyl acetate


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