Design of novel imidazolium based nanostructures for sastainable catalytic applications

  • Carla Calabrese

    Student thesis: Doc typesDoctor of Sciences


    The PhD dissertation surveys the development of novel hybrid materials endowed with imidazolium based organic salts as heterogeneous catalytic systems. Several imidazolium salts have been covalently grafted onto emerging nanostructures such as carbon nanohorns (CNHs), multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs), and polyhedral oligomeric silsesquioxanes (POSS). The design of the catalysts has been previously optimized by changing some reaction parameters. All the solids were fully characterized by several techniques such as thermogravimetric analysis, multinuclear solid state NMR, transmission electron microscopy, N2 physisorption, combustion chemical analysis, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, among others. The obtained materials were employed as organocatalysts for the conversion of carbon dioxide and as stabilizing supports for palladium species in order to be used in C–C cross couplings. Almost all the materials were easily recoverable and recyclable as well as highly active toward the formation of the desired products, showing high thermal stability and outstanding performances in terms of turnover number, productivity and selectivity. The adopted synthetic routes for the design of our hybrids pave the way to a huge spectrum of novel materials for additional catalytic applications.
    Date of Award20 Feb 2019
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • University of Namur
    SponsorsUniversity of Namur & Università di Palermo
    SupervisorCarmela Aprile (Supervisor), Michelangelo Gruttadauria (Co-Supervisor), Luca Fusaro (Jury), Francesco Giacalone (Jury) & Athina Geronikaki (Jury)


    • Heterogeneous Catalysis
    • Carbon Nanostructures
    • Carbon Dioxide Conversion
    • Palladium Catalysis
    • Carbon-Carbon Couplings

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