MPV Reduction of Furfural to Furfuryl Alcohol on Mg, Zr, Ti, Zr–Ti, and Mg–Ti Solids: Influence of Acid–Base Properties
Cuesta-Rioboo, Manuel Jorge
Urbano Navarro, Francisco José
Methylbutynol test reaction
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The Meerwein–Ponndorf–Verley (MPV) reaction is an environmentally-friendly process consisting of the reduction of a carbonyl compound through hydrogen transfer from a secondary alcohol. This work deals with MPV reduction of furfural to furfuryl alcohol on different ZrOx, MgOx, TiOx, and Mg–Ti, as well as Zr–Ti mixed systems. The solids were synthesized through the sol–gel process and subsequently calcined at 200 _C. Characterization was performed using a wide range of techniques: ICP-MS, N2 adsorption-desorption isotherms, EDX, TGA-DTA, XRD, XPS, TEM, TPD of pre-adsorbed pyridine (acidity) and CO2 (basicity), DRIFT of adsorbed pyridine, and methylbutynol (MBOH) test reaction. ZrOx showed the highest conversion and selectivity values, which was attributed to the existence of acid–base pair sites (as evidenced by the MBOH test reaction), whereas the introduction of titanium resulted in the drop of both conversion and selectivity probably due to the increase in Brönsted-type acidity. As for MgOx, it had a predominantly basic carácter that led to the production of the condensation product of one molecule of furfural and one molecule of acetone, and thus resulted in a lower selectivity to furfuryl alcohol. The TiOx solid was found to be mainly acidic and exhibited both Lewis and Brönsted acid sites. The presence of the latter could account for the lower selectivity to furfuryl alcohol. All in all, these results seemed to suggest that the MPV reaction is favored on Lewis acid sites and especially on acid–base pair sites. The process was accelerated under microwave irradiation.