Applied Surface Science, Vol.398, 19-32, 2017
Selective liquid phase oxidation of benzyl alcohol to benzaldehyde by tert-butyl hydroperoxide over gamma-Al2O3 supported copper and gold nanoparticles
Benzyl alcohol oxidation to benzaldehyde was performed by tert-butyl hydroperoxide (TBHP) in the absence of any solvent using. gamma-Al2O3 supported copper and gold nanoparticles. Li2O and ionic liquids were used as additive and stabilizers for the synthesis of the catalysts. The physico-chemical properties of the catalysts were characterized by atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS), X-ray diffraction spectroscopy (XRD), N-2 absorption/desorption (BET), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) and temperature programmed reduction (TPR), whereas, the oxidation reaction was followed by gas chromatography with a flame ionization detector (GC-FID). The as prepared catalysts exhibited good catalytic performance in terms of conversion and selectivity towards benzaldehyde. The performance of the Au-based catalysts is significantly higher than that of the Cu-based catalysts. For both Cu and Au catalysts, the conversion of benzyl alcohol increased as the reaction proceeds, while the selectivity for benzaldehyde decreased. Moreover, the catalysts can be easily recycled and reused with neither significant loss of activity nor selectivity. A kinetic study for the Cu and Au-catalyzed oxidation of benzyl alcohol to benzyldehyde is reported. The rate at which the oxidation of benzyl alcohol is occurring as a function of catalyst and oxidant amounts was investigated, with the apparent rate constant, k(app) being proportional to the amount of nano catalyst and oxygen present in the system. (C) 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.