Selective hydrogenation with Stoli catalytic reactors


    As part of our continuing focus to develop efficient yet straightforward methods for selective hydrogenation in flow, Vapourtec have teamed up with Innovate UK award winners Stoli Catalysts Ltd to demonstrate their recently developed range of catalyst coated reactors for flow chemistry applications.

    Heterogeneous catalytic selective hydrogenation forms the basis of a vast array of important industrial and laboratory based applications.1 It is widely recognised that variations in virtually every possible parameter can affect the regioselectivity of the reaction, including the catalyst, solvent, pressure, and temperature.2 The comprehensive control of reaction parameters permitted by the R-Series, and the negligible backpressure, and enhanced activity and selectivity afforded by the Stoli catalyst-coated reactor has enabled the optimisation of a selective hydrogenation of a surprisingly complex reaction. Using hydrogen gas to reduce cinnamaldehyde to cinnamyl alcohol, we have been able to accomplish higher conversions and selectivity than reported elsewhere in the literature, and with significantly improved throughput.

    This application note describes using the Stoli catalyst-coated reactor with the Vapourtec R-Series, and the experimental work undertaken to determine the reactor’s long-term activity and metal leaching, and optimisation of throughput, resulting in 7 g/hr of cinnamyl alcohol with reaction times of just six minutes. “Selective hydrogenation is a very important but often difficult transformation” says Dr Ryan Skilton, Research Scientist at Vapourtec, “Combining specialist catalyst technology with the R-Series has enabled us to quickly explore and optimise this surprisingly complex hydrogenation, and achieve gram-quantity production of our target product”

    1 Basic Principles in Applied Catalysis,  Editor: M. Baerns,  ISBN 978-3-662-05981-4

    2 Modern Reduction Methods, Editors: Pher G. Andersson and Ian J. Munslow, ISBN: 978-3-527-62212-2

    To read the full selective hydrogenation application note click here

    To read more about the R-Series click here

    To read more about Stoli Catalysts click here

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