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Application of Gallium Nitride Nanostructures and Nitrogen Doped Carbon Spheres as Supports for the Hydrogenation of Cinnamaldehyde

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This paper reports on the synthesis and use of nanostructures of gallium nitride (GaN NSs) and nitrogen doped carbon spheres (NCSs) as support materials for the hydrogenation of cinnamaldehyde. This study provides the first investigation of GaN as a catalyst support in hydrogenation reactions. The GaN NSs were synthesized via chemical vapour deposition (CVD) in a double stage furnace (750 °C) while NCSs were made by CVD in a single stage furnace (950 °C) respectively. TEM analysis revealed that the GaN NSs were rod-like with average diameters of 200 nm, while the NCSs were solid with smoother surfaces, and with diameters of 450 nm. Pd nanoparticles (1 and 3% loadings) were uniformly dispersed on acid functionalized GaN NSs and NCS. The Pd nanoparticles had average diameters that were influenced by the type of support material used. The GaN NSs and NCSs were tested for the selective hydrogenation of cinnamaldehyde in isopropanol at 40 and 60 °C under atmospheric pressure. A comparative study of the activity of the nanostructured materials revealed that the order of catalyst activity was 3% Pd/GaN >3% Pd/NCSs >1% Pd/NCSs >1% Pd/GaN. However, 100% selectivity to hydrocinnamaldehyde (HCALD) was obtained with 1% Pd/GaN at reasonable conversion rates.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2013

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  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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