The abundance of biomass and the growing interest for application of renewable biomass has accelerated the development of bimetallic catalytic processes for preparation of chemicals, presently produced from petroleum feedstock. Biomass derived furfural is a key platform starting material that can be converted to important chemicals. Furfural could also be transformed into cyclopentanone (CPO). CPO is an versatile compound to produce intermediate chemicals, pharmaceuticals, synthesis of fungicides and preparation of polyamides.
The proposed research has two parts.
(1). Synthesis of Pd-Cu bimetallic catalyst on SBA 15 support by standard simultaneous Strong Electrostatic Adsorption (co-SEA) to study whether the particles inside the Pd-Cu bimetallic catalyst are of the same composition as that of at the surface of catalyst and how the synthesis process is affected by diffusion in long pores and large aspect ratio.
(2). Kinetic evaluation of Pd-Cu/SBA 15 bimetallic catalytic efficiency for the production of cyclopentanone (CPO) from aqueous phase hydrogenation of furfural on water in a semi batch reactor. The kinetic data can help to confirm that the particles inside the pores (which are difficult to see on the STEM) are of the same composition as those on the outside of the pores. Further, the kinetic data also helps in establishing internal and external diffusion models.