Niobium to alcohol mol ratio control of the concurring esterification and etherification reactions promoted by NbCl5 and Al2O3 catalysts under microwave irradiation
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Alcohols and acids can be switched to produce ethers or esters by varying the alcohol to catalyst mol ratio, in a new etherification and esterification method using NbCl5/Al2O3 catalyst under "solvent free" conditions and promoted by MW (microwave) irradiation. A "two sites" mechanism for the reaction is proposed, in an attempt to clarify the tendency of the catalyst to be dependent on the alcohol alone during the esterification process. (c) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.