Recently, Researcher from Cardiff University and Lehigh University announced that a gold-palladium alloy catalyst had leaded to a successful direct production of hydrogen peroxide. The experiment showed very high selectivities of more than 95%, which are now comparable to the indirect process, and that makes a direct process a lot more feasible and viable.
The researchers believe that they have the solution to overcome hydrogen peroxide decomposition after being formed, as shown by the previous catalyst used in direct process of hydrogen peroxide. The process works by applying an acid pre-treatment to the carbon support before the gold-palladium alloy nanoparticles are placed on it, thus making smaller metal particles which can block the decomposition reaction.
The experiment results looked promising because the mainstream uses of hydrogen peroxide require concentration level of 3 to 8%. However, it is unclear whether the reaction can be scaled up to industrial scale.
Currently, hydrogen peroxide is industrially produced through indirect process that contains of hydrogenation and oxidation of anthraquinone.