Energy efficiency in chemical reactions: A comparative study of different reaction techniques

M J Gronnow, R J White, J H Clark, D J Macquarrie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Metrics for chemists are much argued, but the energy usage of a reaction has to be one of the most simple and effective methods of comparing technologies. In this concept paper, the energy consumed in preparing one mole of a chemical compound is compared for a variety of technologies. Data are gathered for traditional oil bath, supercritical CO2 (SC-CO2), and microwave reactors. Two different Suzuki couplings, a Knoevenagel condensation, and a Friedel-Crafts acylation are all compared in both the microwave and oil bath, as this is where the most noticeable differences were observed. The most notable result was an 85-fold reduction in energy demand on switching from oil bath to microwave reactor for a Suzuki reaction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)516-518
Number of pages3
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2005



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