Vapor-phase oxidative acetoxylation of toluene on Pd-based bimetallic catalysts was investigated. The main products were benzylacetate, produced via side-chain acetoxylation, and CO and CO2 resulted from combustion. Nuclear acetoxylation hardly occurred. A K-doped Pd-Au/SiO2 gave the highest activity and selectivity for synthesis of benzylacetate among the catalysts tested; the yield of benzylacetate on the K-doped Pd-Au/SiO2 was about 150 times greater than that on a Pd/SiO2. It was found that the addition of an adequate amount of Au to Pd/SiO2 inhibited the formation of CO2, and that potassium species worked as sites for adsorption and activation of acetic acid.
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