Alumina-supported erbium oxide catalysts with various compositions were prepared and characterized by inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectroscopy, N2 physical adsorption measurements, powder X-ray diffraction, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and NH3 temperature-programmed desorption measurements. The catalysts were evaluated for the conversion of cellulose to lactic acid in aqueous solution under inert atmosphere. Er2O3/Al2O3 with 13.9 % Er loading was found to exhibit the highest activity for the conversion of cellulose to lactic acid. Lactic acid yields as high as 45.8 % were obtained when reacting 0.2 g cellulose, 0.05 g catalyst, and 30 mL water at 240 °C under 2 MPa N2 for 3 h. The lactic acid yield decreased gradually with recycling of the catalyst. The decrease in catalytic activity during continuous runs was mainly attributed to the leaching of active erbium species.
Research on Chemical Intermediates – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 9, 2016
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