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Issue 1, 2011
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Synergy of boric acid and added salts in the catalytic dehydration of hexoses to 5-hydroxymethylfurfural in water

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Abstract

In combination with various salts boric acid, B(OH)3, was shown to be an efficient, weak Lewis acid catalyst in the aqueous dehydration of fructose to 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) due to strong complexation between the boron atom and the hexoses. In the dehydration of a highly concentrated aqueous fructose solution (30 wt%), a HMF yield of 60% was achieved at 92% fructose conversion and a HMF selectivity of 65% with 100 g L−1B(OH)3 and 50 g L−1sodium chloride in the aqueous phase and methyl-isobutylketone (MIBK) as extracting solvent. Furthermore, the dehydration of glucose resulted in a yield of 14% HMF at 41% glucose conversion after 5 h at similar conditions. These results are highly competitive with currently reported aqueous HMF dehydration systems. In combination with the non-corrosive and non-toxic nature of the boric acid, compared to other well known homogeneous catalysts applicable for the dehydration process (e.g., H2SO4 and HCl), clearly, the boric acid-salt mixture is a very attractive catalyst system.

Graphical abstract: Synergy of boric acid and added salts in the catalytic dehydration of hexoses to 5-hydroxymethylfurfural in water

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Publication details

The article was received on 23 Jul 2010, accepted on 11 Nov 2010 and first published on 30 Nov 2010


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C0GC00355G
Citation: Green Chem., 2011,13, 109-114
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    Synergy of boric acid and added salts in the catalytic dehydration of hexoses to 5-hydroxymethylfurfural in water

    T. S. Hansen, J. Mielby and A. Riisager, Green Chem., 2011, 13, 109
    DOI: 10.1039/C0GC00355G

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