Declining fossil fuel reserves and the global climate change associated with the consumption of fossil fuel havetriggered intensive interest in developing renewable energy sources.
Biomass is the only renewable organic carbonsource in nature, which endows it with unique advantages in producing various industrially important chemicals.
Cellulose is the most abundant biomass on earth, and the rich hydroxyl groups in the molecules make it an idealfeedstock for the production of polyols.
However, the intra- and inter-molecular hydrogen bonding network protectsthe glycosidic bonds from attack by most solvents or catalysts, and the degradation of cellulose under milderconditions has therefore become a challenging task.
In this presentation, we show that under the catalysis ofmulti-functional tungsten-based catalysts, cellulose could be transformed into ethylene glycol with a highconversion and selectivity. The performances of various catalyst formulations containing tungsten compounds werediscussed, and the reaction mechanism was proposed based on the characterizations of the catalysts and the reactionkinetics.