A Sustainable Approach for the Synthesis of Catalytically Active Peroxidase-Mimic ZnS Catalysts
Cova, Camilla María
Muñoz-Batista, Mario J.
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Zinc sulfides are emerging as promising catalysts in different fields such as photochemistry or organic synthesis. Nevertheless, the synthesis of ZnS compounds normally requires the utilization of toxic sulfur precursors, e.g., thiourea which is a contaminant and carcinogenic agent. As a result, new green and sustainable synthetic methodologies are needed. Herein, an innovative, simple, and cheap approach for the synthesis of ZnS carbon composites is reported. Zinc acetate dihydrate was employed as metal precursor while wasted pig bristles were employed as carbon and sulfur source. The phase and the morphology of the compounds were analyzed by XRD, XPS, SEM, and EDX and the surface area was determined by nitrogen physisorption. ZnS carbon materials showed remarkable peroxidase-like catalytic activity for two different model reactions: the liquid-phase selective oxidation of benzyl alcohol and toluene to benzaldehyde (conversions up to 63% and 29% and selectivities up to 86% and 87%, respectively) using hydrogen peroxide as oxidant under microwave irradiation.