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Issue 10, 2007
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Sustainable production of acrolein: investigation of solid acid–base catalysts for gas-phase dehydration of glycerol

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Abstract

Synthesis of acrolein by catalytic gas-phase dehydration of biomass-derivate glycerol was studied over various solid catalysts with a wide range of acid–base properties. The catalyst acidity and basicity were measured, respectively, by n-butylamine and benzoic acid titration methods using Hammett indicators. The most effective acid strength for the selective dehydration of glycerol to form acrolein appeared between −8.2 ≤ H0 ≤ −3.0, with which acrolein was produced at a selectivity of 60–70 mol%. The catalysts having very strong acid sites (H0 ≤ −8.2) effected a lower acrolein selectivity (40–50 mol%) due to more severe coke deposition in the reaction. Solid acids holding medium strong and weak acid sites (−3.0 ≤ H0 ≤ +6.8) were found to be not selective for the acrolein production, the acrolein selectivity being less than 30 mol%. The mass specific catalytic rate for the acrolein production showed a general trend to increase with the fractional acidity at −8.2 ≤ H0 ≤ −3.0. The catalytic data also suggest that Brønsted acid sites were advantageous over Lewis acid sites in catalyzing the selective synthesis of acrolein from glycerol dehydration. Solid base catalysts were shown not to be effective for acrolein production.

Graphical abstract: Sustainable production of acrolein: investigation of solid acid–base catalysts for gas-phase dehydration of glycerol

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Publication details

The article was received on 12 Feb 2007, accepted on 01 Jun 2007 and first published on 22 Jun 2007


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/B702200J
Citation: Green Chem., 2007,9, 1130-1136
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    Sustainable production of acrolein: investigation of solid acid–base catalysts for gas-phase dehydration of glycerol

    S. Chai, H. Wang, Y. Liang and B. Xu, Green Chem., 2007, 9, 1130
    DOI: 10.1039/B702200J

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