LIBS; Quantification; Elemental imaging; Elemental profile; Heterogeneous catalyst; Palladium;X-RAY-FLUORESCENCE; FLIGHT MASS-SPECTROMETRY; HIGH-SPEED; GEOLOGICAL SAMPLES; HIGH-RESOLUTION; TRACE-ELEMENTS; CONVERTERS; METALS; MICROANALYSIS; MICROPROBE
Currently, the use of catalysis is widespread in almost all industrial processes; its use improves productivity, synthesis yields and waste treatment as well as decreases energy costs. The increasingly stringent requirements, in terms of reaction selectivity and environmental standards, impose progressively increasing accuracy and control of operations. Meanwhile, the development of characterization techniques has been challenging, and the techniques often require equipment with high complexity. In this paper, we demonstrate a novel elemental approach for performing quantitative space-resolved analysis with ppm-scale quantification limits and mu m-scale resolution. This approach, based on laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS), is distinguished by its simplicity, all-optical design, and speed of operation. This work analyzes palladium-based porous alumina catalysts, which are commonly used in the selective hydrogenation process, using the LIBS method. We report an exhaustive study of the quantification capability of LIBS and its ability to perform imaging measurements over a large dynamic range, typically from a few ppm to wt. These results offer new (i)nsight into the use of LIBS-based imaging in the industry and paves the way for innumerable applications. (C) 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.