Influence of Terephthalic Acid Substituents on the Catalytic Activity of MIL-101(Cr) in Three Lewis Acid Catalyzed Reactions

Andrea Santiago-Portillo, Sergio Navalón, Patricia Concepción, Mercedes Álvaro, Hermenegildo García

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Six isostructural MIL-101(Cr)-X (X: H, NO2, SO3H, Cl, CH3, and NH2) materials have been prepared directly by the reaction of CrIII salts and the corresponding terephthalic acid or by postsynthetic treatments of preformed MIL-101(Cr) following reported procedures. The materials were characterized by using XRD (crystallinity and coincident diffraction pattern), isothermal N2 adsorption (specific surface areas range from 2740 m2 g−1 for MIL-101(Cr)-H to 1250 m2 g−1 for MIL-101(Cr)-Cl), thermogravimetry (thermal stability up to 400 °C), and IR spectroscopy (detection of the corresponding substituents), and the results were all in agreement with the reported data for these materials. The MIL-101(Cr) materials were tested as heterogeneous catalysts for epoxide ring opening by methanol, benzaldehyde acetalization by methanol, and Prins coupling, observing a clear influence of the substituent that in general follows a linear relationship with the Hammett σmeta constant of the substituent: the catalytic activity increases as the electron-withdrawing ability of the substituents increases. An up to three orders of magnitude enhancement in the presence of the NO2 substituent was found for some of these reactions. The present study illustrates the versatility that metal–organic frameworks offer as heterogeneous catalysts that allow the design of actives sites with adequate properties tuned for each reaction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2506-2511
Number of pages6
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jul 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • chromium
  • heterogeneous catalysis
  • Lewis acids
  • metal–organic frameworks
  • substituent effects

Cite this