Catalytic ethanolysis of microcrystalline cellulose over a sulfonated hydrothermal carbon catalyst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


  • Zhe Wen
  • Zewei Ma
  • Fuhang Mai
  • Fei Yan
  • Linhao Yu
  • Meng Jin
  • Yushuai Sang
  • Yunfei Bai
  • Kai Cui
  • Kai Wu
  • Mengmeng Chen
  • Hong Chen
  • Yongdan Li

Research units

  • Tianjin University


The catalytic ethanolysis of microcrystalline cellulose in supercritical ethanol is examined over a sulfonated hydrothermal carbon catalyst (SHTC). SHTC is amorphous carbon containing −OH, −COOH and −SO3H groups with total acidity of 7.15 mmol/g and −SO3H acidity of 1.72 mmol/g. SHTC shows high catalytic activity towards the ethanolysis of cellulose in supercritical ethanol. Complete conversion of microcrystalline cellulose with high yields of ethyl levulinate and ethyl glucoside is obtained. The reaction temperature, time and catalyst amount have significant effects on the catalytic performances of SHTC. Appropriate reaction time and less catalyst amount are favorable for the production of ethyl glucoside, while prolonged reaction time and appropriate catalyst amount favor the production of ethyl levulinate. The highest yield of ethyl glucoside as 420.9 mg/g cellulose is obtained over 0.1 g SHTC at 245 ºC for 1 h. The highest yield of ethyl levulinate as 817.6 mg/g cellulose is achieved over 0.3 g SHTC at 245 ºC for 1 h. SHTC shows good stability in the recycle experiments with slight loss of catalytic activity.


Original languageEnglish
JournalCatalysis Today
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 30 May 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Research areas

  • Ethyl glucoside, Ethyl levulinate, Microcrystalline cellulose, Sulfonated hydrothermal carbon, Supercritical ethanol

ID: 34657834