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Cobalt-catalyzed amination of 1,3-propanediol. Effects of catalyst promotion and use of supercritical ammonia as solvent and reactant
|Published in||Journal of Catalysis. 1999, vol. 183, no. 2, p. 373-383|
|Abstract||The catalytic synthesis of 1,3-diaminopropane from 1,3-propanediol and ammonia was studied in a continuous fixed-bed reactor in the pressure range 50 to 150 bar. The unsupported Co-based catalysts applied were characterized by N2physisorption, XRD, XPS, TPR, and ammonia adsorption using pulse thermal analysis and DRIFT spectroscopy. The latter investigations revealed that the best catalyst, 95 wt% Co–5 wt% Fe, contained only very weak acidic sites, unable to chemisorb ammonia. The absence of strong acidic and basic sites was crucial to suppress the various acid/base-catalyzed side reactions (retro-aldol reaction, hydrogenolysis, alkylation, disproportionation, dimerization, oligomerization). Other important requirements for improved diaminopropane formation were the use of excess ammonia (molar ratio NH3/diol>20) and the presence of the metastable β-Co phase. A small amount of Fe additive could efficiently hinder the transformation of this phase into the thermodynamically stable α-Co phase and thus prevent catalyst deactivation up to 10 days on stream. Application of supercritical ammonia almost doubled the selectivity to amino alcohol and diamine. The selectivity enhancement in the near-critical region is attributed to elimination of the interphase mass transport limitations and to the resulting higher surface ammonia concentration.|