Omega−3 fatty acid ethyl ester from a simple catalytic non-oxidative dehydrogenation of a biobased oleochemical
Essential fatty acids and derivatives, such as ethyl esters, have acquired an important interest, lately. The reactivity of ethyl linoleate (di-unsaturated fatty acid ethyl ester, FAEE), specially the catalytic reactions of non-oxidative dehydrogenation and isomerization, in a fixed bed reactor using active carbon as a catalyst has been studied. Active carbon presented dehydrogenation properties under non-oxidative conditions and in a temperature range of 70–120 °C. Omega−3 tri-unsaturated FAEE and aromatic FAEE were the detected dehydrogenation compounds. Mono-unsaturated FAEE and isomers of ethyl linoleate were the products of hydrogenation and isomerization reactions, respectively. The dehydrogenation activity of active carbon remained stable with time. The non-oxidative dehydrogenation to omega−3 tri-unsaturated FAEE becomes more important than the isomerization and hydrogenation reactions at lower temperatures such as 70 °C. Up to a 7.2% of omega−3 tri-unsaturated FAEE has been obtained synthetically for the first time.
Journal: Catalysis Communications - Volume 8, Issue 3, March 2007, Pages 319–323