Karina Cruz-Rodríguez, Ricardo García-Alamilla, Francisco Paraguay-Delgado, María-Guadalupe Cárdenas-Galindo, Brent E. Handy, Juan Reyes-Gómez
October 3, 2018
In this work, we present the synthesis of SBA-15 materials modified with 6 and 9 mol.% of Zr and P, respectively. Silanol SBA-15 groups were detected by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. X-ray diffractograms revealed that the typical hexagonal arrangement of SBA-15 was preserved after Zr and P introduction, and the structure was confirmed by transmission electron microscopy. After the Zr introduction, the morphology of SBA-15 changed from fibrous particles to a semi-spherical shape according to scanning electron microscopy, while nitrogen physisorption revealed the stability of the textural materials after the P introduction. The infrared spectra of pyridine adsorption indicated that the Zr and P incorporation into SBA-15 generated adequate Lewis and Br⊘nsted acidities to carry out methanol dehydration and direct the selectivity towards dimethyl ether, with medium-strong acid sites being responsible for obtaining up to 99% selectivity towards dimethyl ether.