Brief Communications

Nature 438, 178 (10 November 2005) | doi:10.1038/438178a; Published online 9 November 2005

Green chemistry: Biodiesel made with sugar catalyst

Masakazu Toda1, Atsushi Takagaki1, Mai Okamura1, Junko N. Kondo1, Shigenobu Hayashi2, Kazunari Domen3 & Michikazu Hara1

The production of diesel from vegetable oil calls for an efficient solid catalyst to make the process fully ecologically friendly. Here we describe the preparation of such a catalyst from common, inexpensive sugars. This high-performance catalyst, which consists of stable sulphonated amorphous carbon, is recyclable and its activity markedly exceeds that of other solid acid catalysts tested for 'biodiesel' production.

  1. Chemical Resources Laboratory, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Yokohama 226-8503, Japan
  2. Research Institute of Instrumentation Frontier, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8565, Japan
  3. Department of Chemical System Engineering, School of Engineering, University of Tokyo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8656, Japan

Correspondence to: Michikazu Hara1 Email:


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