Highly selective conversion of methanol to propylene: design of an MFI zeolite with selective blockage of (010) surfaces†
As an important catalyst of methanol-to-propylene (MTP) conversion, the ZSM-5 zeolite has an anisotropic diffusion path and a large pore size, resulting in the formation of undesirable heavy aromatic by-products. Herein, we developed a surface-specific silica deposition method to block straight channels of nanosized ZSM-5 crystals selectively. By such a coating method, we can selectively suppress the yield of aromatics from the original 13% to 2.4% at 100% conversion of methanol. Trapped hydrocarbon pool species are directly confirmed by aberration-corrected S/TEM for the first time. Such a method of trapping and restricting hydrocarbon pool species in a multiscale zeolite with 10-membered rings would significantly increase its catalytic efficiency and olefin diffusion. Moreover, this provides new methodologies for zeolite structure construction and will be greatly beneficial for the industrial MTP process.