APCATA 407-2011-91

Hydrogen spillover behavior of Zn/HZSM-5 showing catalytically active protonic
acid sites in the isomerization of n-pentane

The impregnation of zinc particles into MFI zeolite (HZSM-5) caused the formation of catalytically active
protonic acid sites for isomerizing n-pentane in the presence of hydrogen. An infrared (IR) study with
preadsorbed pyridine revealed that these protonic acid sites originated from the spillover of molecular
hydrogen from the zinc species onto the zeolite surface. The requirements for this spillover effect were
further studied by IR spectroscopy of adsorbed ammonia and carbon monoxide. The presence of zinc
species in HZSM-5 suggested the exchange of acidic character towards strong Lewis acids rather than
Brønsted acid sites. The isomerization of n-pentane over the Zn/HZSM-5 catalyst resulted in high activity
and stability and the conversion to iso-pentane depends on the promotive effect of hydrogen as a carrier
gas.