Catalytic activity of maghemite supported palladium catalyst in nitrobenzene hydrogenation

Viktória Hajdu, Ádám Prekob, Gábor Muránszky, István Kocserha, Zoltán Kónya, Béla Fiser, B. Viskolcz, László Vanyorek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


A maghemite supported palladium catalyst was prepared and tested in nitrobenzene hydrogenation. The catalyst support was made by a newly developed combined technique, where sonochemical treatment and combustion have been used. As a first step, maghemite nanoparticles were synthesized. Iron(II) citrate was treated in polyethylene glycol by high-intensity ultrasound cavitation to get a homogeneous dispersion, then the product was combusted. The produced powder contained maghemite nanoparticles with 21.8 nm average particle size. In the second step of catalyst preparation, the magnetic nanoparticles were dispersed in the ethanolic solution of palladium(II) nitrate. The necessary energy for the reduction of Pd2+ ions was achieved in the “hot spots” by acoustic cavitation, thus catalytically active palladium was formed. The prepared maghemite supported Pd catalyst have been tested in nitrobenzene hydrogenation at three different temperatures (283 K, 293 K and 303 K) and constant pressure (20 bar). At 293 K and 303 K, the conversion and selectivity of nitrobenzene was above 99% and 96%, respectively. However, the selectivity was only 73% at 273 K because the intermediate species (azoxybenzene and nitrosobenzene) have not been transformed to aniline. All in all, the prepared catalyst is successfully applied in nitrobenzene hydrogenation and easily separable from the reaction media.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-116
Number of pages10
JournalReaction Kinetics, Mechanisms and Catalysis
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2020


  • Aniline
  • Magnetic catalyst
  • Nitrobenzene
  • Selectivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry

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