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Investigating catalytic properties which influence dehydration and oxidative dehydrogenation in aerobic glycerol oxidation over Pt/TiO2

Tigwell, Max, Douthwaite, Mark, Smith, Louise R., Dummer, Nicholas F. ORCID:, Morgan, David J. ORCID:, Bethell, Donald, Taylor, Stuart H. ORCID: and Hutchings, Graham J. ORCID: 2022. Investigating catalytic properties which influence dehydration and oxidative dehydrogenation in aerobic glycerol oxidation over Pt/TiO2. Journal of Physical Chemistry C 126 (37) , pp. 15651-15661. 10.1021/acs.jpcc.2c03680

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The use of heterogeneous catalysts to convert glycerol into lactic acid has been extensively investigated in recent years. Several different strategies have been employed, but importantly, the highest production rates of lactic acid are achieved through aerobic oxidation under alkaline conditions. Despite the progress made in this area, insight into how the catalytic properties influence the selectivity of the competing pathways, oxidative dehydrogenation and dehydration, remains limited. Developing a deeper understanding is therefore critical, if process commercialization is to be realized. Using a model Pt/TiO2 catalyst, we set out to investigate how the supported metal particle size and support phase influenced the selectivity of these two pathways. Both these parameters have a profound effect on the reaction selectivity. Using a range of characterization techniques and through adopting a systematic approach to experimental design, important observations were made. Both pathways are first instigated through the oxidative dehydrogenation of glycerol, leading to the formation of glyceraldehyde or dihydroxyacetone. If these intermediates desorb, they rapidly undergo dehydration through a reaction with the homogeneous base in solution. Based on the experimental evidence we therefore propose that selectivity to lactic acid is influenced by surface residence time.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Chemistry
Additional Information: License information from Publisher: LICENSE 1: URL:, Start Date: 2022-09-13
Publisher: American Chemical Society
ISSN: 1932-7447
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 26 September 2022
Date of Acceptance: 30 August 2022
Last Modified: 05 Jan 2024 04:43

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