(735b) Synthesis of Itaconic Acid Ester Analogues via Self-aldol Condensation of Ethyl Pyruvate Catalyzed by Hafnium BEA Zeolites

Wang, Y., Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Lewis, J., Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Román-Leshkov, Y., Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Lewis acidic zeolites are used to synthesize unsaturated dicarboxylic acid esters via aldol condensation of keto esters. Hafnium-containing BEA (Hf-BEA) zeolites catalyze the condensation of ethyl pyruvate into diethyl 2-methyl-4-oxopent-2-enedioate and diethyl 2-methylene-4-oxopentanedioate (an itaconic acid ester analog) with a selectivity of ca. 80% at ca. 60% conversion in a packed-bed reactor. The catalyst is stable for 132 h on stream, reaching a turnover number of 5110 molEP molHf-1. Analysis of the dynamic behavior of Hf-BEA under flow conditions and studies with Na-exchanged zeolites suggest that Hf(IV) open sites possess dual functionality for Lewis and Brønsted acid catalysis.