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Department of Materials Science and Engineering


Photocatalytic ethane conversion into value-added chemicals is a great challenge especially under visible light irradiation. The production of ethyl hydroperoxide (CH CH OOH), which is a promising radical reservoir for regulating the oxidative stress in cells, is even more challenging due to its facile decomposition. Here, we demonstrated a design of a highly efficient visible-light-responsive photocatalyst, Au/WO , for ethane oxidation into CH CH OOH, achieving an impressive yield of 1887 μmol g in two hours under visible light irradiation at room temperature for the first time. Furthermore, thermal energy was introduced into the photocatalytic system to increase the driving force for ethane oxidation, enhancing CH CH OOH production by six times to 11 233 μmol g at 100 °C and achieving a significant apparent quantum efficiency of 17.9% at 450 nm. In addition, trapping active species and isotope-labeling reactants revealed the reaction pathway. These findings pave the way for scalable ethane conversion into CH CH OOH as a potential anticancer drug.

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© 2021 The Author(s). Published by the Royal Society of Chemistry. Publisher’s version of record:

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Chemical Science

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Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.


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