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Journal of Chemistry
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 5641604, 9 pages
https://doi.org/10.1155/2017/5641604
Research Article

Synthesis of Propylene Carbonate from Epoxide and CO2 Catalyzed by Carbon Nanotubes Supported Fe1.5PMo12O40

Department of Chemistry, King Saud University, P.O. Box 2455, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence should be addressed to Ahmed Aouissi; rf.oohay@dessiuoa

Received 22 March 2017; Revised 8 June 2017; Accepted 22 June 2017; Published 11 September 2017

Academic Editor: Esteban P. Urriolabeitia

Copyright © 2017 Tahani Al-Garni et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) were functionalized and were then used as supports of Fe1.5PMo12O40 (FePMo) Keggin heteropolyanions catalysts. The characterization of the resulting catalysts was investigated by inductively coupled plasma spectrometry (ICP), Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectra, X-ray diffraction (XRD), ultraviolet-visible (UV-Vis) light spectroscopy, and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). FTIR and XRD results confirmed that FePMo was bounded on CNTs successfully and the Keggin structure was preserved. Characterization by TEM showed that solids with high FePMo content exhibited aggregation of FePMo in large particles. The as-prepared catalysts were tested in the synthesis of propylene carbonate (PC) from CO2 and propylene oxide (PO) in a solvent-free reaction and under mild conditions. Effects of various parameters, such as reaction temperature, reaction time, FePMo content on the support, and catalyst loading on the reaction, were investigated. It has been found that CNTs supported FePMo achieved 57.7% PO conversion and 99.0% PC selectivity, whereas unsupported FePMo led only to 8.5% conversion and 48.6% selectivity. The remarkable enhancement of the catalytic activity over the supported catalyst can be attributed mainly to the better dispersion and reactivity of the FePMo catalyst in the supported material.