Oxygen reactivity plays a key role in the performance of ceria-based catalysts. Aberration-corrected transmission electron microscopy and molecular dynamics simulations were used to study the oxygen atom diffusion in ceria under activated conditions. Reactive oxygen atom and its real-time diffusion were visualized. The interplay between cerium and oxygen atoms originating from a Coulomb interaction was revealed by the out-of-plane buckling of cerium atoms associated with oxygen transport. Anisotropic oxygen atom diffusion that depends on crystal orientations was discovered, demonstrating a preferential  crystallographic diffusion pathway. These findings reveal prospects for applications of anisotropic orientation-relevant fluorite-structured oxides.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Physics and Astronomy