Highly selective hydrogenation of cinnamaldehyde to cinnamyl alcohol with 2-propanol was achieved using SiC-supported Au nanoparticles as photocatalyst. The hydrogenation reached a turnover frequency as high as 487 h-1 with 100% selectivity for the production of alcohol under visible light irradiation at 20 °C. This high performance is attributed to a synergistic effect of localized surface plasmon resonance of Au NPs and charge transfer across the SiC/Au interface. The charged metal surface facilitates the oxidation of 2-propanol to form acetone, while the electron and steric effects at the interface favor the preferred end-adsorption of α,β-unsaturated aldehydes for their selective conversion to unsaturated alcohols. We show that this Au/SiC photocatalyst is capable of hydrogenating a large variety of α,β-unsaturated aldehydes to their corresponding unsaturated alcohols with high conversion and selectivity.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Chemistry
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry