Carbon xerogels (CXs) synthesized from resorcinol and formaldehyde under different pH conditions were investigated. Both the textural and surface properties of the CXs depend closely on the pH used in the synthesis procedure. Concerning the texture, the mesoporous surface area (Smeso) increases and the micropore volume (Vmicro) decreases as the pH increases; concerning the surface chemistry, surface oxygen functional groups were easier to be created (by O2) on CX synthesized at lower pH. Application of these CXs as support of gold catalysts was also studied. Results showed that the oxygen activated CX that was synthesized at moderate pH (i.e., pH 6.0) was the most favorable support for gold catalysts used in selective oxidation of benzyl alcohol by molecular oxygen in liquid phase, due to the adequate amounts of surface oxygen functional groups created on the surface. <alternatives> [...] </alternatives>
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