Microwave-assisted furfural production using hectorites and fluorohectorites as catalysts
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It has previously been reported that the use of microwave heating, together with the presence of co-solvents, improves the efficiency of furfural production from biomass. Solid acid catalysts can be a good alternative to mineral acids, since they can prevent corrosion and can be reused. However, the formation of humines should be minimized. Several delaminated and fluorinated hectorites, with different types and strengths of acid sites, were synthesized and tested as catalysts for the production of furfural from commercial xylose and from an acid biomass extract of almond shells. A new methodology was developed to prepare crystalline fluorohectorite at 800 ¿C in just 3 h. The presence of F significantly increased the acidity strength in the protonated fluorohectorite (H-FH) taking into account its high ammonia desorption temperature (721 ¿C). Additionally, this sample had fourteen times higher total acidity by m2 than the reference H-ßeta acid catalyst. H-FH was the most efficient catalyst at short reaction times (1 h) for the transformation of xylose to furfural under microwaves using toluene as co-solvent, regardless of whether the xylose was commercial (20% furfural yield) or an extract of almond shells (60% furfural yield). However, the acidity of the extract affected the fluorohectorite structure and composition.
CitationSánchez, V. [et al.]. Microwave-assisted furfural production using hectorites and fluorohectorites as catalysts. "Catalysts", 1 Setembre 2019, vol. 9, núm. 9:706, p. 1-15.