Disproportionation of rosin on an industrial Pd/C catalyst: reaction pathway and kinetic model discrimination

Bioresour Technol. 2011 Feb;102(3):3504-11. doi: 10.1016/j.biortech.2010.11.022. Epub 2010 Nov 12.


In this work, a phenomenological study of the isomerisation and disproportionation of rosin acids using an industrial 5% Pd on charcoal catalyst from 200 to 240°C is carried out. Medium composition is determined by elemental microanalysis, GC-MS and GC-FID. Dehydrogenated and hydrogenated acid species molar amounts in the final product show that dehydrogenation is the main reaction. Moreover, both hydrogen and non-hydrogen concentration considering kinetic models are fitted to experimental data using a multivariable non-linear technique. Statistical discrimination among the proposed kinetic models lead to the conclusion hydrogen considering models fit much better to experimental results. The final kinetic model involves first-order isomerisation reactions of neoabietic and palustric acids to abietic acid, first-order dehydrogenation and hydrogenation of this latter acid, and hydrogenation of pimaric acids. Hydrogenation reactions are partial first-order regarding the acid and hydrogen.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Agriculture / methods
  • Carbon / chemistry*
  • Catalysis
  • Computer Simulation
  • Kinetics
  • Models, Chemical*
  • Palladium / chemistry*
  • Resins, Plant / chemistry*
  • Trees / chemistry*
  • Wood / chemistry*


  • Resins, Plant
  • Palladium
  • Carbon
  • rosin