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Unraveling Structural Properties and Reactivity Trends of Cu-Ni Bimetallic Nanoalloy Catalyst for Biomass-Derived Levulinic Acid Hydrogenation

Abstract

Herein, we have developed a series of silica nanosphere supported CuNi bimetallic nanoalloy catalysts via solvothermal, impregnation and co-precipitation methods and evaluated their catalytic perfromance for hydrogenation of levulinic acid, a key platform molecule in many biorefinery schemes, into γ-valerolactone. Different characterization techniques including Powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD), High resolution transmission electron microscopy (HR-TEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), solid state 13C CP MAS NMR, Field emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM) with the corresponding elemental mapping have been employed to evaluate the compositional and structural features of the silica nanosphere encapsulated Cu-Ni bimetallic systems. The resultant catalyst as developed by impregnation method presents enhanced catalytic performance compared with the other ones, providing 99.3% conversion of levulinic acid with 96.8% selectivity of γ-valerolactone in 13h at 120ºC. Comparing catalytic experiments between bimetallic Cu-Ni and monometallic Cu catalysts demonstrated that the outstandingly improved catalyst’s activity and stability could be ascribed to the modulation of electron properties of the actives sites and inhibition of metal particles with the introduction of another metal promoter, with good recyclability after ten recycles without notable loss in the activity. Our investigation in this study sheds light a new insight for the structure-performance relationship of bimetallic Cu-Ni nanoalloy phase in lower cost liquid fuel production from biomass.

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Publication details

The article was received on 20 Mar 2018, accepted on 13 Apr 2018 and first published on 17 Apr 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8SE00138C
Citation: Sustainable Energy Fuels, 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Unraveling Structural Properties and Reactivity Trends of Cu-Ni Bimetallic Nanoalloy Catalyst for Biomass-Derived Levulinic Acid Hydrogenation

    J. Mondal, P. Saikiran, I. Mondal, A. Shrotri, S. R. B and N. Lingaiah, Sustainable Energy Fuels, 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8SE00138C

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