Jump to main content
Jump to site search


A robust core–shell nanostructured nickel–iron alloy@nitrogen-containing carbon catalyst for the highly efficient hydrogenation of nitroarenes

Author affiliations

Abstract

Currently, the catalytic selective hydrogenation of nitroarenes to produce aromatic amines is one of the most important key reactions in many fine chemical processes. In particular, non-noble-metal-catalyzed hydrogenation of nitroarenes represents more sustainable chemical processes. Here, we report a new robust and recyclable core–shell nanostructured nickel–iron alloy@nitrogen-containing carbon (NiFe@NC) catalyst and the beneficial effect of alloying Ni with Fe for the above reaction. The key to this synthetic strategy was thermally transforming the Ni–Fe layered double hydroxide (NiFe-LDH)/melamine mixture to form a fixed NiFe@NC nanostructure. A series of characterization results revealed the formation of NiFe alloy nanoparticles (NPs) coated with the NC overlayer. The as-fabricated NiFe@NC catalyst with a Ni/Fe atomic ratio of 3.0 exhibited superior activity for the reduction of the nitro group in o-chloronitrobenzene, with a 99.5% yield of o-chloroaniline under mild reaction conditions. The initial reaction rate over the catalyst was nearly three times that over the monometallic Ni@NC counterpart, and even one-order magnitude higher than that over pristine NiFe-LDH-derived NiFe alloy NPs. The extraordinary activity of NiFe@NC was reasonably attributed to the unique core–shell nanostructure, where both the NiFe alloy core and the NC overlayer shell could construct a significant promotional effect, being beneficial for the selective cleavage of the N–O bond. Recycling experiments indicated that the catalyst could be easily separated and recovered under an external magnetic field and experienced excellent recyclability during seventeen cycles without an obvious loss of catalytic activity. Furthermore, the present catalyst was also highly active for the chemoselective hydrogenation of other substituted nitroarenes bearing different functional groups to the corresponding anilines.

Graphical abstract: A robust core–shell nanostructured nickel–iron alloy@nitrogen-containing carbon catalyst for the highly efficient hydrogenation of nitroarenes

Back to tab navigation

Supplementary files

Publication details

The article was received on 25 Jul 2018, accepted on 05 Sep 2018 and first published on 06 Sep 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8DT03033B
Citation: Dalton Trans., 2018, Advance Article
  •   Request permissions

    A robust core–shell nanostructured nickel–iron alloy@nitrogen-containing carbon catalyst for the highly efficient hydrogenation of nitroarenes

    Y. Zhang, C. Liu, G. Fan, L. Yang and F. Li, Dalton Trans., 2018, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C8DT03033B

Search articles by author

Spotlight

Advertisements