Electro-oxidation of amines to nitriles with Ti-Ni electrodes.
Nihal El Guenani Mir a, David Carvajal a, Andres Molla-Cuni a, José Antonio Mata a, Antonio Guerrero a, Elena Mas-Marzá a
a Institute of Advanced Materials (INAM), Universitat Jaume I, 12071 Castelló de la Plana, Spain
Proceedings of nanoGe Fall Meeting 2021 (NFM21)
#SolCat21. (Photo-)Electrocatalysis: From the Atomistic to System Scale
Online, Spain, 2021 October 18th - 22nd
Organizers: Karen Chan, Sophia Haussener and Brian Seger
Poster, Nihal El Guenani Mir, 279
Publication date: 23rd September 2021

Nitriles are an interesting class of organic compounds which are included in a wide variety of natural products and industrial processes. Typical routes to prepare nitriles proceed with low atom economy, require toxic reagents, and/or have limited selectivity. An alternative procedure for the synthesis of nitriles is the electrooxidation of primary amine. This methodology allows avoiding the use of toxic and hazardous chemicals, as well as reducing the amount of solvents used.  One of the main aims in electrosynthesis is the achievement of stable and robust electrodes. In our group we have developed porous Ti/Ni alloys as electrodes which show low overpotential and high-density currents for the oxygen evolution reaction (OER).[1] These Ti/Ni electrodes are prepared in a facile and scalable method, based on powder metallurgy, which led to electrodes with  high surface area and high concentration of active species. Herein, we explore the use of these electrodes for the oxidation of amines to nitriles.[2] Furthermore, the proposed electrodes compared with Ni/Se reported in the  literature have a great benefit because helps to reduce time reaction by half. On the other hand, the electrode also exhibits a different response with respect to the amines tested, which is clearly reflected in the change of the j-V curves. In addition, different conditions were tried,varying the electrolyte molarity and different nickel electrodes such us Ni foam, showing here some results of the best conditions tested. To conclude,the electro-oxidation of primary amines (-CH2-NH2)  generate nitrile products that are hydrophobic and can easily separate from aqueous electrolyte/electrode interface.

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