Published: CABEQ 21 (3) (2007) 251–255
Paper type: Original Scientific Paper

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Effect of Nickel Particle Size on Alumina Supported Nickel Catalysts for p-Nitrophenol Hydrogenation

Y. Du and R. Chen

The catalytic hydrogenation of p-nitrophenol to p-aminophenol was investigated over alumina supported nickel catalysts prepared by impregnation reduction method and mechanical mixing method. The catalysts were characterized by XRD and FESEM. The results show that the nickel particle diameter of alumina supported nickel prepared by impregnation reduction method (denoted as Ni/Al2O3) is slightly smaller than that of alumina supported nickel prepared by mechanical mixing method (denoted as Ni+Al2O3), and the catalytic activity of Ni/Al2O3 is higher. The nickel particle size of Ni/Al2O3 would increase as Ni/Al2O3 is reduced in hydrogen for 2 h at 270 °C and 600 °C, respectively, and its catalytic activity correspondingly decreases. These imply that the reaction is structure sensitive and the smaller nickel particle diameter is beneficial to obtain a higher catalytic activity. However, the nickel particle diameter almost has no influence on the catalytic selectivity of the p-nitrophenol hydrogenation to p-aminophenol.

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p-nitrophenol, catalytic hydrogenation, alumina supported nickel, nano-sized nickel