Flow nanocatalysis: innovative methodologies towards green chemical syntheses
Green chemistry is a chemical philosophy that aims to develop more sustainable, economical and environmental friendly protocols in the industry. It involves concepts of nanocatalysis, flow chemistry and microwave chemistry to design more sustainable chemical processes. This contribution aims to briefly introduce the concepts of flow nano-catalysis and provide an overview of key developments and examples in the field of green chemical processing.
The development of more sustainable, economical and environmentally friendly protocols has been one of the major goals of the scientific community in recent years. Green chemistry and green engineering emerged as important scientific paradigms aiming to emphasize safety, energy efficiency, waste minimization and raw material maximization, as well as benign by design protocols and processes for the benefit of humankind (1, 2). Several joint efforts along these lines encompassing a number of disciplines were proposed in recent years. These include the promotion of catalytic methods, continuous flow processes, solventless and solvent-friendly reactions, the use of alternative energy sources (e.g. mechanochemistry, microwaves, ultrasounds) as well as room temperature processes and related low impact methodologies (3).
Catalysis has played a key role in chemical protocols for centuries, mainly divided into homogeneous and heterogeneously catalyzed reactions (4). A homogeneous catalyst is in the same phase as the reactants, usually a soluble metal complex in a reactant mixture. Being in the same phase allows higher accessibility to the cat ...