Abstract Samarium-loaded zirconia catalysts were prepared by impregnating ZrO 2 with aqueous solutions of samarium chloride followed by calcination. The resulting Sm(O,Cl)/ZrO 2 catalysts showed high yield and selectivity for the propylene carbonate synthesis from carbon dioxide and propylene oxide. The yield per weight of samarium oxychloride (SmOCl) for the Sm(O,Cl)/ZrO 2 catalyst with the samarium loading of 10.3 wt% was about twenty times higher than that for SmOCl bulk catalyst. The high efficiency of the Sm(O,Cl)/ZrO 2 catalyst is possibly due to the formation of highly dispersed SmOCl on the surface of ZrO 2 .

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