Theoretical study on conversion of fructose to 5-hydroxymethylfurfural in acidic media

Xiaowa Nie, Xin Liu, Min Liu, Chunshan Song, Xinwen Guo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


A density functional theory study was conducted on the dehydration processes of fructose to 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) through both a series of cyclic furan intermediates and the acyclic intermediates on the enediol pathways, together with various secondary reactions. The conversion reactions are composed of several elementary reactions, such as protonation, dehydration, and deprotonation. For acyclic fructose, the activation barrier for protonation step is higher which thus determines the overall reaction rate. However, for cyclic fructose, it is easy to be protonized, and deprotonation turns out to be the rate-determining step. The presence of water in the reaction medium will promote the conversion of cyclic fructose by facilitating the deprotonation step, but will inhibit the dehydration of acyclic fructose by retarding the protonation step.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)73-81
Number of pages9
JournalShiyou Xuebao, Shiyou Jiagong/Acta Petrolei Sinica (Petroleum Processing Section)
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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