A precursor to a catalytic structure comprising zinc oxide and copper oxide. The zinc oxide has a sheet-like morphology or a spherical morphology and the copper oxide comprises particles of copper oxide. The copper oxide is reduced to copper, producing the catalytic structure. The catalytic structure is fabricated by a hydrothermal process. A reaction mixture comprising a zinc salt, a copper salt, a hydroxyl ion source, and a structure-directing agent is formed. The reaction mixture is heated under confined volume conditions to produce the precursor. The copper oxide in the precursor is reduced to copper. A method of hydrogenating a carbon oxide using the catalytic structure is also disclosed, as is a system that includes the catalytic structure.
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT
The United States Government has certain rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. DE-AC07-05ID14517 between the United States Department of Energy and Battelle Energy Alliance, LLC.