Alpha-pinene isomerization on acid-treated clays
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Liquid phase isomerization of α-pinene was studied over a number of differently pre-treated montmorillonite clays. The effects of the acid pre-treatment parameters (acid-to-clay ratio (A/C), water-to-acid ratio (W/A), temperature and pre-treatment time) on the product distribution were investigated. It was observed that the pre-treatment with acid improved the catalytic activity of that catalyst which was activated at 200 °C for 4 h at A/C ratios between 0.2 and 0.4. Alpha-pinene consumption was very small over the catalysts prepared with an A/C ratio of 0.8. Characterization studies that were done by nitrogen and water vapor adsorption experiments and by IR measurements showed that catalysts with high differential pore volumes for pores around 2 nm and homogenous mesopore distributions and with low dealumination degrees were good catalysts for the production of camphene. Catalysts having heterogeneous mesoporosity were found to be the preferable ones for limonene production.