Basic chemical compounds (commodities) are a fundamental part of the chemical industry since their large-scale production is necessary to meet the needs of the different actors in the industry, who require abundant quantities of raw materials to manufacture substances of greater complexity. One example is the manufacturing process of aldehydes, commonly produced using alkenes as substrates in hydroformylation reactions.
However, this type of synthesis comes with the problem that the reactions under standard conditions are not chemoselective and/or regioselective, thus obtaining unwanted side products. Therefore, developing catalysts that can direct these reactions toward higher quantities of the desired products would allow using smaller amounts of the starting substrate and obtaining a better process yield.
Researchers from the University of Barcelona (UB) have developed a library of rhodium-based catalysts mainly to improve regioselectivity in hydroformylation reactions.
The researchers have designed a library of catalysts that can be used for hydroformylation processes using alkenes as substrates. The technology developed consists of a single ligand in combination with a rhodium precursor, both acting as core components of the catalytic system. Furthermore, using an external agent (also called a regulation agent) in combination with the ligand and rhodium precursor mainly enhances the regioselectivity. The proposed technology directs hydroformylation reactions towards a higher obtention of linear aldehydes, highly valuable products in these reactions.
Examples of aldehydes obtained at a high yield using these catalysts
A patent application has already been requested for this technology. The current TRL of the invention is TRL 4, given the fact that several high-value aldehydes have already been synthesized at a laboratory scale.
The represented institution is looking for a collaboration, leading to a commercial exploitation of the presented invention.
Protection status: Patent Application
Contact: Pablo Lago / firstname.lastname@example.org