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Title: Glucose- and Cellulose-Derived Ni/C-SO3H Catalysts for Liquid Phase Phenol Hydrodeoxygenation

Sulfonated carbons were explored as functionalized supports for Ni nanoparticles to hydrodeoxygenate (HDO) phenol. Both hexadecane and water were used as solvents. The dual-functional Ni catalysts supported on sulfonated carbon (Ni/C-SO3H) showed high rates for phenol hydrodeoxygenation in liquid hexadecane, but not in water. Glucose and cellulose were precursors to the carbon supports. Changes in the carbons resulting from sulfonation of the carbons resulted in variations of carbon sheet structures, morphologies and the surface concentrations of acid sites. While the C-SO3H supports were active for cyclohexanol dehydration in hexadecane and water, Ni/C-SO3H only catalyzed the reduction of phenol to cyclohexanol in water. The state of 3 – 5 nm grafted Ni particles was analyzed by in situ X-ray absorption spectroscopy. The results show that the metallic Ni was rapidly formed in situ without detectable leaching to the aqueous phase, suggesting that just the acid functions on Ni/C-SO3H are inhibited in presence of water. Using in situ IR spectroscopy, it was shown that even in hexadecane, phenol HDO is limited by the dehydration step. Thus, phenol HDO catalysis was further improved by physically admixing C-SO3H with the Ni/C-SO3H catalyst to balance the two catalytic functions. The minimum addition of 7 wt.%more » C-SO3H to the most active of the Ni/C-SO3H catalysts enabled nearly quantitative conversion of phenol and the highest selectivity (90%) towards cyclohexane in 6 h, at temperatures as low as 473 K, suggesting that the proximity to Ni limits the acid properties of the support.« less
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Journal Article
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Journal Name: Chemistry - A European Journal, 21(4):1567-1577
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
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Country of Publication:
United States
Ni Nanoparticles; XAFS; Phenol Hydrodeoxygenation; Carbon Support; in-situ IR