Production of p-xylene from bio-based 2,5-dimethylfuran over high performance catalyst WO3/SBA-15†
Mesoporous solid acid catalyst WO3/SBA-15 exhibited high performance for the production of bio-based p-xylene (PX). After immobilization on SBA-15, isolated [WO4]2− tetrahedral species which were coordinatively unsaturated, were generated and functioned as Lewis acid centers. The ratio of Lewis to Brønsted acid sites varied in the range of 7.4 to 13.4 by adjusting the calcination temperature. A high ratio of Lewis to Brønsted acid sites and the mesoporous structure contributed to the high activity and stability: a selectivity of 88.0% for PX with a conversion of 64.4% and a carbon balance of 90.1% was achieved over 0.20-WO3/SBA-15-700. Compared with microporous Sn-Beta, the as-prepared catalyst showed better resistance to carbon deposition with a 20% higher yield. The spent catalyst could be easily regenerated by calcination at high temperature. The conversion decreased by 3% and no loss in PX selectivity was observed after five regeneration cycles. The as-prepared WO3/SBA-15 catalyst is highly active, stable and recyclable, and has high potential towards bio-based PX production.