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Energy and Environment Directorate
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Staff Accomplishments

ETD Staff Author Article in Science Magazine

July 2007
Congratulations to ETD's John Holladay, Heather Brown, and Z. Conrad Zhang along with former post-doc Haibo Zhao on having their article published in the June 15, 2007, issue of Science. Their article details how they directly converted glucose into hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF), a promising surrogate for polyesters and other petroleum-based chemicals. The researchers achieved HMF yields of about 70 percent from glucose and about 90 percent from fructose while leaving only traces of levulinic acid impurities. Their novel non-acidic catalytic system converted sugars to HMF without producing the common byproduct of levulinic acid seen in other fructose conversion methods. The journal Science is published by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The magazine's website describes it as the world's leading journal of original scientific research, global news, and commentary.

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