Facile Styrene Epoxidation with H2O2 over Novel Niobium Containing Cage Type Mesoporous Silicate, Nb-KIT-5
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Niobium has been incorporated into cage-like ordered mesoporous KIT-5, a cubic close-packed (Fm3m) structured silica, for the first time by a direct hydrothermal synthesis method. Small-angle X-ray scattering spectra and nitrogen physisorption results confirm the formation of the KIT-5 structure. The incorporation of Nb and its coordination were confirmed by techniques such as elemental analysis, diffuse reflectance UV–Vis, Raman, HR-SEM and NH3-TPD. When tested as epoxidation catalyst for styrene with H2O2, Nb-KIT-5 mainly yielded (1,2-dimethoxyethyl) benzene with methanol as solvent. It also showed better catalytic activity compared to other mesostructured catalysts such as Nb-KIT-6 and Nb-SBA-15.
KeywordsKIT-5 Niobium Lewis acid Epoxidation Styrene
This research was partly supported with funds from the following sources: National Science Foundation Accelerating Innovation Research Grant (IIP-1127765) and United States Department of Agriculture USDA/NIFA Award 2011-10006-30362. The authors thank Dr. Prem Thapa of the Microscopy and Analytical Imaging Laboratory, University of Kansas for dual beam SEM and TEM characterizations and Dr. Brian P. Grady, University of Oklahoma, for SAXS analysis. The FEI Versa 3D dual-beam FIB/SEM instrument and WAXS analysis instrument (XRD) at the University of Kansas was acquired through an NSF Major Research Instrumentation grants CBET 1229645 and CHE-0923449 respectively.
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