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Issue 25, 2015
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Facile synthesis of microcellular foam catalysts with adjustable hierarchical porous structure, acid–base strength and wettability for biomass energy conversion

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Abstract

Herein we report a novel synthetic strategy for fabrication of microcellular foam catalysts (MFCs) with hydrophobic, acid–base, and hierarchical porous properties for conversion of one-pot cellulose to a key chemical platform (i.e. 5-hydroxymethylfurfural, HMF) for biofuels. The water-in-oil (W/O) Pickering high internal phase emulsions (HIPEs), stabilized by both amino-functionalized nanoparticles (namely, S-NH2) and Span 80, were used as the template for simultaneous polymerization of oil phase containing 1-octene, divinylbenzene (DVB), and trihydroxymethylpropyl trimethylacrylate (TMPTMA). After subsequent sulfonation process, acid and base sites resulting from grafted –SO3H group of polydivinylbenzene (PDVB) and S-NH2 were both located on the surface of the MFCs. The resultant MFCs composite had a typical hierarchical porous structure, and the macropores with a well-defined open-cell and interconnecting pore throat structure could be controlled via the composition of the oil phase of emulsion, with the mesopore structure closely related to the degree of cross-linking of oil-soluble functional monomer. The representative catalyst MFCs-3 had a hierarchical porous structure (macropores ranging from 1.0 µm to 30 µm and uniform mesopores in 32.1 nm), hydrophobic surface (water contact angle of 125°), 0.735 mmol g−1 of base, and 1.305 mmol g−1 of acid. The HMF yield of 41% for cellulose conversion showed its excellent catalytic performance. This work opens up a route for simple and controlled fabrication of multifunctional polymeric catalysts for biomass energy conversion.

Graphical abstract: Facile synthesis of microcellular foam catalysts with adjustable hierarchical porous structure, acid–base strength and wettability for biomass energy conversion

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
27 mar. 2015
Accepted
18 maí 2015
First published
21 maí 2015

J. Mater. Chem. A, 2015,3, 13507-13518
Article type
Paper

Facile synthesis of microcellular foam catalysts with adjustable hierarchical porous structure, acid–base strength and wettability for biomass energy conversion

H. Gao, J. Pan, D. Han, Y. Zhang, W. Shi, J. Zeng, Y. Peng and Y. Yan, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2015, 3, 13507
DOI: 10.1039/C5TA02239H

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