, Volume 52, Issue 3, pp 288-296
Date: 14 Jan 2009

From Renewable to Fine Chemicals Through Selective Oxidation: The Case of Glycerol

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Catalytic selective oxidation of glycerol is presented in terms of catalytic systems and experimental conditions. Unsupported gold nanoparticles (AuNPs), AuNPs on carbon and on TiO2 were employed and compared in terms of reaction selectivity and activity. The role of the base and the formed hydrogen peroxide has been considered. Gold based catalysts showed selectivity that is strongly dependent of the reaction conditions. In particular C–C scission products increases by increasing the reaction temperature but correlated only partially with the rate of degradation of the H2O2 formed under the operative conditions. Moreover, under neutral/acidic conditions glycerol can be oxidised also by increasing the temperature slightly, but it leads to a detrimental effect on selectivity and catalyst life.