Facile and selective hydrogenolysis of β-O-4 linkages in lignin catalyzed by Pd–Ni bimetallic nanoparticles supported on ZrO2
The β-O-4 linkage in lignin can be selectively cleaved by Pd–Ni bimetallic nanoparticles supported on ZrO2 using hydrogen gas as the hydrogen donor under ambient pressure and neutral conditions. Conspicuous enhancement in activity is observed compared with single nickel and palladium catalysts based on the results of experiments and characterization. Moreover, hydrogenation of the produced phenols is tuned by adjusting the amount of NaBH4. The catalyst can be reused over ten times in the model reaction and over five times in the hydrogenolysis of lignin without an obvious change in activity and selectivity.