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Laminaria digitata and palmaria palmata seaweeds as natural source of catalysts for the cycloaddition of CO2 to Epoxides

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JournalMOLECULES
DateAccepted/In press - 9 Jan 2019
DatePublished (current) - 12 Jan 2019
Issue number2
Volume24
Number of pages14
Pages (from-to)1-14
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Seaweed powder has been found to act as an effective catalyst for the fixation of CO2 into epoxides to generate cyclic carbonates under solvent free conditions. Model background reactions were performed using metal halides and amino acids typically found in common seaweeds which showed potassium iodide (KI) to be the most active. The efficacy of the seaweed catalysts kelp (Laminaria digitata) and dulse (Palmaria palmata) was probed based on particle size, showing that kelp possessed greater catalytic ability, achieving a maximum conversion and selectivity of 63.7% to styrene carbonate using a kelp loading of 80% by weight with respect to epoxide, 40 bar of CO2, 120C for 3 h. Maximizing selectivity was difficult due to the generation of diol side product from residual H2O found in kelp, along with a chlorinated by-product thought to form due to a high quantity of chloride salts in the seaweeds. Data showed there was loss of organic matter upon use of the kelp catalyst, likely due to the breakdown of organic compounds and their subsequent removal during product extraction. This was highlighted as the likely cause of loss of catalytic activity upon reuse of the Kelp catalyst.

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© 2019 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

    Research areas

  • Clean synthesis, CO sequestration, Green catalyst, Sustainability

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