Role of water in metal catalyst performance for ketone hydrogenation: a joint experimental and theoretical study on levulinic acid conversion into gamma-valerolactone


While Ru is a poor hydrogenation catalyst compared to Pt or Pd in the gas phase, it is efficient under aqueous phase conditions in the hydrogenation of ketones such as the conversion of levulinic acid into gamma-valerolactone. Combining DFT calculations and experiments, we demonstrate that water is responsible for the enhanced reactivity of Ru under those conditions.


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Chemical Communications, Vol.50, Issue 83, pages 12450-12453