Single-atom catalysts (SACs), consisting of metals atomically dispersed on a support, are considered as advanced materials bridging homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis, representing the catalysis at the limit. The enhanced performance of these catalysts is due to the combination of distinct factors such as well-defined active sites, comprising metal single atoms in different coordination environments also varying its valence state and strongly interacting with the support, in this case porous carbons, maximizing then the metal efficiency in comparison with other metal surfaces consisting of metal clusters and/or metal nanoparticles. The purpose of this review is to summarize the most recent advances in terms of both synthetic strategies of producing porous carbon-derived SACs but also its application to green synthesis of highly valuable compounds, an area in which the homogeneous catalysts are classically used. Porous carbon-derived SACs emerge as a type of new and eco-friendly catalysts with great potential. Different types of carbon forms, such as multi-wall carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs), graphene and graphitic carbon nitride or even others porous carbons derived from Metal–Organic-Frameworks (MOFs) are recognized. Although it represents an area of expansion, experimentally and theoretically, much more future efforts are needed to explore them in green fine chemical synthesis.
- Atomically dispersed metal catalysts
- Fine chemicals
- Porous carbons