• New reactants and improved catalysts for maleic anhydride synthesis
  • Nuovi reagenti e catalizzatori più efficienti per la sintesi di anidride maleica
  • Caldarelli, Aurora <1984>


  • CHIM/04 Chimica industriale


  • The role of the amount of Nb, used as a dopant for VPP, and how its presence may affect the generation of the active and selective δ-VOPO4 at the VPP surface under reaction conditions, was investigated, employing ex-situ and in-situ characterisation techniques. We found that Nb indeed may favour, under specific conditions, the generation of the desired δ-VOPO4 compound; however, its effect of enhancement of catalytic behaviour was not simply proportional to its concentration. In order to better understand how Nb may affect the generation of the active phase, we prepared V/Nb mixed phosphates; the formation of a solid solution was possible only under specific conditions, with a limited reciprocal dissolution of the two elements. We concluded that even though the incorporation of small amounts of Nb5+ in the VOPO4 (and also of V5+ in NbOPO4) cannot be excluded, a phenomenon which might favour the generation of the desired δ-VOPO4 compound, however the main role of Nb5+ was related to a modification of the redox properties of V4+ in the VPP, and specifically of the redox potential associated to the couple V4+/V5+. This led to a catalyst that during reaction was more oxidized than the corresponding undoped VPP, which under specific reaction conditions allowed obtain a better selectivity to MA. Oppositely, an excessive oxidation of VPP (catalysts having high [Nb]) affected negatively the MA selectivity, because of the excessive formation of COx. A preliminary study regarding the oxidehydration of 1-butanol into MA was carried out testing various catalysts: the best catalyst resulted VPP; however the MA selectivity was lower than that obtained from n-butane. With in-situ/operando Raman study of the Nb-doped and undoped catalysts we verified that the redox cycle involves the VPP and the δ-VOPO4 compounds, that the reoxidation step of V4+ in VPP is the rate-determining one.


  • 2012-04-03


  • Doctoral Thesis
  • PeerReviewed


  • application/pdf



Caldarelli, Aurora (2012) Nuovi reagenti e catalizzatori più efficienti per la sintesi di anidride maleica, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Chimica industriale , 24 Ciclo. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsdottorato/4763.