Journal of Catalysis, Vol.394, 181-192, 2021
Synthesis of hierarchical SAPO-34 to improve the catalytic performance of bifunctional catalysts for syngas-to-olefins reactions
Bifunctional process integrating methanol synthesis and methanol-to-olefins conversion provides a new synthetic strategy for lower olefins (C-2-C-4(=)), whereas designing matchable zeolite components is still challenging due to the harsh reaction conditions. Here, a hierarchical SAPO-34 zeolite with a sandglass-like hollow structure is synthesized from an aluminum-rich precursor gel, which provides an abundance of crystal defects during zeolite crystallization. The bifunctional catalyst obtained by integrating the hierarchical SAPO-34 and ZnO-ZrO2 oxide offers a C-2-C-4(=) selectivity of 80% at 25% CO conversion with excellent stability in syngas conversion. We demonstrate that in the presence of high-pressure hydrogen, a moderate density of acid sites is the prerequisite for obtaining high C-2-C-4(=) selectivity in syngas/methanol conversion, because the olefins are easily hydrogenated into alkanes by excessive Bronsted acid sites. The hierarchical architecture significantly prolongs the lifetime of bifunctional catalysts, by facilitating C-2-C-4(=) desorption and slowing down the coking rate. (c) 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.