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Issue 20, 2016
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High yield production of HMF from carbohydrates over silica–alumina composite catalysts

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Abstract

An efficient and selective production of 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) from carbohydrates is achieved in the presence of mesoporous AlSiO catalysts in a THF/H2O–NaCl biphasic system. These mesoporous AlSiO catalysts are prepared by a facile sol–gel method and have tunable acidity. Their acidic sites are characterized and quantified by NH3-TPD, microcalorimetry of NH3 adsorption and Py-FTIR, then correlated with the catalytic isomerization and dehydration of glucose to HMF. The detailed studies show that the AlSiO-20 catalyst with a Si/Al ratio of 18 is favorable for HMF production due to its inherently high surface area, high amounts of acid sites and a suitable Brønsted/Lewis acid ratio. Over the AlSiO-20 catalyst, an HMF yield of 63.1% is obtained at 160 °C for 1.5 h in the biphasic THF/H2O–NaCl medium with 10 wt% glucose in water. Further conducting the amplification experiment 30 times, the HMF yield still reaches 60.2% and the yield has no obvious decline after four catalytic cycles; this is the best result for an amplification experiment of HMF from glucose over a heterogeneous catalyst so far. After separation, HMF can be used for the production of 2,5-furandicarboxylic acid (FDCA) and as high as 95% FDCA yield is obtained over the Pt/C catalyst. Furthermore, the AlSiO catalyst demonstrates excellent activity in the conversion of disaccharides, polysaccharides and even lignocellulosic biomass, indicating it would be a promising catalyst for the conversion of glucose and glucose-based carbohydrates to HMF in industry applications.

Graphical abstract: High yield production of HMF from carbohydrates over silica–alumina composite catalysts

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
29 Jul 2016
Accepted
31 Aug 2016
First published
15 Sep 2016

Catal. Sci. Technol., 2016,6, 7586-7596
Article type
Paper

High yield production of HMF from carbohydrates over silica–alumina composite catalysts

X. Li, Q. Xia, V. C. Nguyen, K. Peng, X. Liu, N. Essayem and Y. Wang, Catal. Sci. Technol., 2016, 6, 7586
DOI: 10.1039/C6CY01628F

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