Supported Gold Nanoparticles as Efficient Catalysts in the Solventless Plasmon Mediated Oxidation of sec-Phenethyl and Benzyl Alcohol
G.L. Hallett-Tapley, M.J. Silvero, C. J. Bueno-Alejo, M. González-Béjar, C.D. McTiernan, M. Grenier, J.C. Netto-Ferreira, and J.C. Scaiano, “Supported Gold Nanoparticles as Efficient Catalysts in the Solventless Plasmon Mediated Oxidation of sec-Phenethyl and Benzyl Alcohol”, J. Phys. Chem. C, 117 (23), 12279-12288 (2013).
Surface plasmon excitation of supported gold nanoparticles in the presence of H2O2 leads to selective oxidation of sec-phenethyl and benzyl alcohols to the carbonyl products acetophenone and benzaldehyde, respectively, in the absence of additional solvents. Light-emitting diodes are compared with microwave irradiation as excitation sources. Hydrotalcite, ZnO, and Al2O3 have been chosen as the solid supports. The overall efficiency of the alcohol oxidation was found to be largely dependent on the nature of the support, with hydrotalcite-derived nanocomposites giving the highest conversions to product, yielding 90% acetophenone after 40 min of LED irradiation. The mechanism for plasmon-mediated alcohol oxidation is believed to involve a significant contribution from the support itself, with adsorption of the alcohol substrate and progression of the oxidation reaction being largely facilitated by the basicity of the support used.