Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research, Vol.59, No.45, 19876-19883, 2020
Feasible Synthesis of a Bifuran-Based Monomer for Polymer Synthesis from a Hemicellulose-Derived Platform
Developing new catalytic technologies to utilize biomass as the carbon source for polymer production attracts more attention than ever because of the rapid depletion of fossil feedstock and the demand for a sustainable society. However, the integrated technologies to bridge the raw biomass such as cellulose and hemicellulose with the syntheses of polymeric monomers are still very limited. Here, we report a simple method to synthesize 2,2-bifuryl-5,5-dicarboxylic acid from hemicellulose-derived furfural derivatives as the surrogate of 4,4'-biphenyldicarboxylic acid, a significant monomer in the polymer industry. The reaction was performed through the reductive coupling of 5-bromofuroic acid, an industrial subproduct of furfural, with commercial Pd/C as the catalyst and CO as the reductant source in aqueous medium, and the synthesis can be scaled up feasibly. Characterization of the polymers derived from this biobased monomer disclosed the promising physical properties as those from fossil feedstock, which opens up a brilliant market for furfural-based hemicellulose utilizations.