Commercial Perspective of Alternative Routes to Acrylic Acid Monomer

2018 Spring Symposium

Jin­suo Xu, The Dow Chem­i­cal Com­pa­ny, 400 Arco­la Rd, Col­legeville, PA 19426

Abstract — Acrylic acid and cor­re­spond­ing acry­lates are major monomers for a vari­ety of func­tion­al poly­mers used broad­ly in our dai­ly life such as coat­ing, sealant, and per­son­al care. The two-stage selec­tive oxi­da­tion of propy­lene to acrolein and then to acrylic acid was first com­mer­cial­ized in ear­ly 70s and quick­ly became the dom­i­nant route to acrylic acid. Dri­ven by feed­stock cost or avail­abil­i­ty or sus­tain­abil­i­ty, sig­nif­i­cant efforts from both indus­try and acad­e­mia were devot­ed to devel­op­ing alter­na­tive routes to acrylic acid. Cat­a­lyst plays crit­i­cal role in the key step of trans­form­ing dif­fer­ent raw mate­r­i­al into prod­uct effec­tive­ly, for exam­ple, mixed met­al oxides MoVTeN­bOx in propane selec­tive oxi­da­tion, sol­id acids in dehy­dra­tion of glyc­erin or 3-HP, and var­i­ous oxides in aldol con­den­sa­tion of acetic acid and formalde­hyde. This pre­sen­ta­tion will dis­cuss the progress of these major routes, the chal­lenges towards com­mer­cial­iza­tion, and poten­tial solu­tions.