Send to

Choose Destination
Chem Sci. 2018 Sep 6;9(42):8127-8133. doi: 10.1039/c8sc03208d. eCollection 2018 Nov 14.

Gold-catalyzed conversion of lignin to low molecular weight aromatics.

Author information

Department of Chemistry , University of Kentucky , 505 Rose Street , Lexington , KY 40506 , USA.
Center for Applied Energy Research (CAER) , University of Kentucky , 2540 Research Park Drive , Lexington , KY 40511 , USA . Email:
Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center , The Wisconsin Energy Institute , University of Wisconsin-Madison , 1552 University Avenue , Madison , WI 53726 , USA.
Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering , University of Wisconsin-Madison , 1415 Engineering Drive , Madison , WI 53726 , USA.
European Bioenergy Research Institute , Aston University , Aston Triangle , Birmingham , B4 7ET , UK.
Department of Biochemistry , University of Wisconsin-Madison , 433 Babcock Drive , Madison , WI 53706 , USA.
School of Science , RMIT University , 124 La Trobe Street , Melbourne , VIC 3000 , Australia.


A heterogeneous catalyst system, employing Au nanoparticles (NPs) and Li-Al (1 : 2) layered double hydroxide (LDH) as support, showed excellent activity in aerobic oxidation of the benzylic alcohol group in β-O-4 linked lignin model dimers to the corresponding carbonyl products using molecular oxygen under atmospheric pressure. The synergistic effect between Au NPs and the basic Li-Al LDH support induces further reaction of the oxidized model compounds, facilitating facile cleavage of the β-O-4 linkage. Extension to oxidation of γ-valerolactone (GVL) extracted lignin and kraft lignin using Au/Li-Al LDH under similar conditions produced a range of aromatic monomers in high yield. Hydrolysis of the Au/Li-Al LDH oxidized lignin was found to increase the degree of lignin depolymerization, with monomer yields reaching 40% for GVL extracted lignin. Based on these results, the Au/Li-Al LDH + O2 catalyst system shows potential to be an environmentally friendly means of depolymerizing lignin to low molecular weight aromatics under mild conditions.

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Royal Society of Chemistry Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center