The structure of titanium species grafted on a purely siliceous MCM-41 and their catalysis in the epoxidation of cyclohexene with tert-butyl hydroperoxide (TBHP) were investigated. FT-IR, XANES and UV-vis were used for the examination of the Ti-grafted MCM-41. The results indicated that the titanium atoms are grafted on the wall surface of the MCM-41 by four-fold coordination. The four-fold coordinated titanium species are mainly grafted by two or one -O-Si-O- bridges on the MCM-41, resulting in so-called bipodal or monopodal titanium centres in partially polymerised states. The ratio of monopodal to bipodal titanium increases with the increase in Ti-content. These partially polymerised titanium species considered as catalytic active centres have high activity and selectivity in the epoxidation reaction. The used Ti-grafted MCM-41 samples were regenerated by heating in nitrogen or air atmosphere. The regeneration in nitrogen atmosphere gives samples with significantly higher catalytic activity than in air. (c) 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.