Catalysis Letters

, Volume 60, Issue 1, pp 51–57

Furfural hydrogenation over carbon‐supported copper

  • Rajeev S. Rao
  • R. Terry K. Baker
  • M. Albert Vannice

DOI: 10.1023/A:1019090520407

Cite this article as:
Rao, R.S., Baker, R.T.K. & Vannice, M.A. Catalysis Letters (1999) 60: 51. doi:10.1023/A:1019090520407


Furfural hydrogenation over copper dispersed on three forms of carbon – activated carbon, diamond and graphitized fibers – were studied. Only hydrogenation of the C=O bond to form either furfuryl alcohol or 2‐methyl furan occurred at temperatures from 473 to 573 K. Reduction at 573 K gave the most active catalysts, all three catalysts had activation energies of 16 kcal/mol, and turnover frequencies were 0.018–0.032 s-1 based on the number of Cu0 + Cu+ sites, which were counted by N2O adsorption at 363 K and CO adsorption at 300 K, respectively. The Cu/activated carbon catalyst showed no deactivation during 10 h on stream, in contrast to the other two catalysts. A simple Langmuir–Hinshelwood model invoking two types of sites was able to fit all kinetic data quite satisfactorily, thus it was consistent with the presence of both Cu0 and Cu+ sites.

furfural hydrogenation Cu/carbon catalysts kinetics 

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rajeev S. Rao
    • 1
  • R. Terry K. Baker
    • 2
  • M. Albert Vannice
    • 3
  1. 1.Akzo‐Nobel ChemicalsDobbs FerryUSA
  2. 2.Department of ChemistryNortheastern UniversityBostonUSA
  3. 3.Department of Chemical EngineeringPennsylvania State UniversityUniversity ParkUSA