Influence of the preparation method of sulfated zirconia nanoparticles for levulinic acid esterification
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Zirconia nanomaterials were prepared by hydrothermal synthesis with or without template and were modified by post synthesis method with sulfate groups. The materials were thoroughly characterized by X-ray powder diffraction, TEM, N2 physisorption, FTIR spectroscopy of adsorbed pyridine TG analysis and XPS spectroscopy. The catalytic performance of nanosized ZrO2 catalysts and their sulfated modifications was studied in levulinic acid esterification with ethanol. The sulfate group’s dispersion was predetermined by the use of template during the mesoporous zirconia synthesis. A relation between sulfate groups leaching and the applied synthesis conditions (with or without template) of the zirconia nanoparticles was found. Sulfated materials showed significantly higher activity compared to non-sulfated ones. Furthermore, it has been found that the presence of template during the mesoporous ZrO2 nanoparticles preparation influences significantly the zirconia phase and catalytic performance in levulinic acid esterification.
KeywordsEthyl levulinate Esterification Nanosized sulfated zirconia Biomass utilization
Financial support from the COST action FP 1306, ДКOCT 01/21 and by the Bulgarian-Hungarian Inter-Academic Exchange Agreement is greatly acknowledged.
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