Alcohol-Selective Oxidation in Water under Mild Conditions via a Novel Approach to Hybrid Composite Photocatalysts

Francesco Parrino, Leonardo Palmisano, Vittorio Loddo, Ali Abd-Elaal, Rosaria Ciriminna, Mario Pagliaro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


The oxidation of alcohols to carbonyl compounds in a clean fashion (i.e., with water as a solvent or under solvent-free conditions, and using O2 or H2O2 as the primary oxidant) is the subject of considerable research efforts. A new approach for the selective oxidation of soluble aromatic alcohols in water under mild conditions via a novel composite photocatalyst has been developed. The catalyst is synthesized by grafting 4-(4-(4-hydroxyphenylimino)cyclohexa-2,5dienylideneamino)phenol and silver nanoparticles onto the surface of moderately crystalline titanium dioxide. The titanium dioxide-based composite was first extensively characterized and then employed in the catalytic oxidation of 4-methoxybenzyl alcohol to 4-methoxybenzaldehyde under UV irradiation in water at room temperature. The corresponding aldehyde was obtained with unprecedented high selectivity (up to 86 %). The method is general and opens the route to fabrication of photocatalytic composites based on titanium dioxide functionalized with shuttle organic molecules and metal nanoparticles for a variety of oxidative conversions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)779-785
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry


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