The continuous oxidation of norbornene (C7H10) by molecular oxygen over a silver catalyst at 500-573 K has been investigated. In contrast to that observed during the temperature programmed reaction of norbornene and oxygen adsorbed on Ag(110) no norbornene epoxide is formed. Instead benzene is the sole partial oxidation product. A stable selectivity of 20 to 25% with fractional conversions up to 0.8 at 573 K could be obtained by inclusion of 15 to 30 ppm dichloroethane in the feed. Separate experiments with exo-norbornene epoxide showed that in the absence of oxygen it was almost completely isomerised to 3-cyclohexene-1-carboxyaldehyde with production of lesser amounts of norcamphor and norbornene. With oxygen present carbon dioxide and small amounts of benzene were also produced. It is concluded that norbornene epoxide cannot be a gas phase intermediate in the production of benzene from norbornene.
- norbornene epoxide