Selective Hydrogenation of Crotonaldehyde to Crotyl Alcohol over Metal Oxide Modified Ir Catalysts and Mechanistic Insight

Masazumi Tamura, Kensuke Tokonami, Yoshinao Nakagawa, Keiichi Tomishige

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

108 Citations (Scopus)


The scope of metal oxide modified noble metal (M+M′Ox) catalysts was scrutinized in the hydrogenation of crotonaldehyde to crotyl alcohol as a model reaction under mild reaction conditions (303 K, 0.8 MPa, water solvent), demonstrating that MoOx, WOx, NbOx, FeOx and ReOx are effective metal oxides for Ir/SiO2 to enhance both the activity and selectivity, although the optimized (metal oxide)/(Ir metal) molar ratio depends on the metal oxide. MoOx modified Ir/SiO2 catalyst (Ir-MoOx/SiO2 (Mo/Ir = 1)) was the most efficient, providing a high yield of crotyl alcohol (90%) and a high TOF (217 h-1). The catalytic activity under such mild reaction conditions is the highest among the reported heterogeneous catalysts. These results showed that modification of active metals with an appropriate amount of metal oxides is an effective method for the development of efficient catalysts for selective hydrogenations. The reaction mechanism over the metal oxide modified Ir catalysts was investigated using Ir-ReOx/SiO2 (Re/Ir = 1) as a model catalyst by means of FTIR studies on H2/D2 adsorption, crotonaldehyde adsorption, and temperature-programmed desorption of crotonaldehyde, and kinetic studies on effects of H2 pressure and crotonaldehyde concentration, isotopic effect of hydrogen (VH2/VD2), and comparison of reactivities between the aldehyde group and olefin group using various substrates. The reaction proceeds via four steps: (i) adsorption of crotonaldehyde on ReOx species, (ii) generation of hydride species from H2 on Ir metal species, (iii) hydride attack to the crotonaldehyde adspecies, and (iv) desorption of the produced crotyl alcohol, and the third step is the rate-determining step. Ir metal plays a role in the generation of hydride (H-) species from H2, leading to the high selectivity to crotyl alcohol, and ReOx plays a role in promotion of crotonaldehyde adsorption, leading to the proximity of crotonaldehyde to the active site and activation of the aldehyde group, which results in high activity and further improvement in the selectivity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3600-3609
Number of pages10
JournalACS Catalysis
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jun 3


  • heterogeneous catalysis
  • iridium
  • selective hydrogenation
  • unsaturated alcohol
  • unsaturated aldehyde


Dive into the research topics of 'Selective Hydrogenation of Crotonaldehyde to Crotyl Alcohol over Metal Oxide Modified Ir Catalysts and Mechanistic Insight'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this