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Conversion of phenylacetonitrile in supercritical alcohols within a system containing small volume of water


The reaction of phenylacetonitrile in supercritical methanol and ethanol in a system containing a small volume of water was studied. The effects of various operating conditions, such as reaction temperature, reaction time, the mole ratio of phenylacetonitrile/water/methanol or ethanol on the product yield were systematically investigated. The optimal yield of methyl phenylacetate for phenylacetonitrile in supercritical methanol in a system containing a small volume of water was 70 % at 583 K and 2.5 h. The optimal yield of ethyl phenylacetate for phenylacetonitrile in supercritical ethanol with a small volume of water was 80 % at 583 K and 1.0 h. At the same time, a feasible mechanism was proposed for phenylacetonitrile in supercritical methanol and ethanol in a system containing a small volume of water.

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Correspondence to Yuan-Yuan Wang.

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Hou, ZQ., Zhang, RZ., Luo, LG. et al. Conversion of phenylacetonitrile in supercritical alcohols within a system containing small volume of water. Chem. Pap. 69, 490–494 (2015).

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  • phenylacetonitrile
  • supercritical methanol/ethanol
  • methyl phenylacetate
  • ethyl phenylacetate
  • alcoholysis reaction mechanism