What is Nafion?

Nafion belongs to the wide class of solid superacids catalysts, in that it exhibits acid stength greater than that of 100% H2SO4. It has hydrophobic (-CF2-CF2-) and hydrophilic (-SO3H) regions in its polimeric structure, and its supeacidity is attributed to the electron-withdrawing effect of the perfluorocarbon chain acting on the sulfonic acid group. Nafion is able to catalyze various reactions, such as alkylation, disproportionation, and esterification.

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