Phosphorus promotion and poisoning in zeolite-based materials: synthesis, characterisation and catalysis
Phosphorus and microporous aluminosilicates, better known as zeolites, have a unique but poorly understood relationship. For example, phosphatation of the industrially important zeolite H-ZSM-5 is a well-known, relatively inexpensive and seemingly straightforward post-synthetic modification applied by the chemical industry not only to alter its hydrothermal stability and acidity, but also to increase its selectivity towards light olefins in hydrocarbon catalysis. On the other hand, phosphorus poisoning of zeolite-based catalysts, which are used for removing nitrogen oxides from exhaust fuels, poses a problem for their use in diesel engine catalysts. Despite the wide impact of phosphorus–zeolite chemistry, the exact physicochemical processes that take place require a more profound understanding. This review article provides the reader with a comprehensive and state-of-the-art overview of the academic literature, from the first reports in the late 1970s until the most recent studies. In the first part an in-depth analysis is undertaken, which will reveal universal physicochemical and structural effects of phosphorus–zeolite chemistry on the framework structure, accessibility, and strength of acid sites. The second part discusses the hydrothermal stability of zeolites and clarifies the promotional role that phosphorus plays. The third part of the review paper links the structural and physicochemical effects of phosphorus on zeolite materials with their catalytic performance in a variety of catalytic processes, including alkylation of aromatics, catalytic cracking, methanol-to-hydrocarbon processing, dehydration of bioalcohol, and ammonia selective catalytic reduction (SCR) of NOx. Based on these insights, we discuss potential applications and important directions for further research.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Recent Advances in Zeolite Chemistry and Catalysis