Selective Heterogeneous Catalytic Hydrogenation of Nitriles to Primary Amines
Primary amines are important intermediates, especially in the area of pharmaceutical, plastic and agrochemical industry. The heterogeneous catalytic hydrogenation of nitriles is one of the most frequently applied process for the synthesis of diverse amines. However, the control of the selectivity is a critical issue in this reaction. Over the past decade, many studies have been reported using heterogeneous transition metal catalysts for the selective reduction of nitriles to the corresponding primary amines. The type of the catalysts, especially, the chemical nature of metals in the catalysts is one of the most important factors to influence the selectivity, the reaction rate, and possibly also the reaction pathway and the deactivation of the catalyst. Thus, this review focuses on the heterogeneous transition metal catalysts and summarizes the recent developments achieved in the selective catalytic hydrogenation of nitriles to primary amines.