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Title: Natural Catalysts for Molten Cellulose Pyrolysis to Targeted Bio-Oils

Abstract

Catalysis of biomass biopolymer cellulose by alkaline earth metals is a fundamental chemistry relevant to energy processes including combustion, pyrolysis and gasification. In this work, the catalytic decomposition of cellulose by calcium ions was evaluated at high temperature (400-500°C) to elucidate the chemical mechanisms leading to the formation of volatile organic compounds.

Authors:
 [1]
  1. Univ. of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Univ. of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
OSTI Identifier:
1361063
Report Number(s):
DOE-UMN-12659
DOE Contract Number:
SC0012659
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
09 BIOMASS FUELS

Citation Formats

Dauenhauer, Paul J. Natural Catalysts for Molten Cellulose Pyrolysis to Targeted Bio-Oils. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1361063.
Dauenhauer, Paul J. Natural Catalysts for Molten Cellulose Pyrolysis to Targeted Bio-Oils. United States. doi:10.2172/1361063.
Dauenhauer, Paul J. Fri . "Natural Catalysts for Molten Cellulose Pyrolysis to Targeted Bio-Oils". United States. doi:10.2172/1361063. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1361063.
@article{osti_1361063,
title = {Natural Catalysts for Molten Cellulose Pyrolysis to Targeted Bio-Oils},
author = {Dauenhauer, Paul J.},
abstractNote = {Catalysis of biomass biopolymer cellulose by alkaline earth metals is a fundamental chemistry relevant to energy processes including combustion, pyrolysis and gasification. In this work, the catalytic decomposition of cellulose by calcium ions was evaluated at high temperature (400-500°C) to elucidate the chemical mechanisms leading to the formation of volatile organic compounds.},
doi = {10.2172/1361063},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Fri Jun 02 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Fri Jun 02 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

Technical Report:

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  • Understanding the fundamental chemical and physical aging mechanisms is necessary to learn how to produce a bio-oil that is more stable during shipping and storage. This review provides a basis for this understanding and identifies possible future research paths to produce bio-oils with better storage stability.
  • This University of Massachusetts, Amherst project, "Fast Pyrolysis Oil Stabilization: An Integrated Catalytic and Membrane Approach for Improved Bio-oils" started on 1st February 2009 and finished on August 31st 2011. The project consisted following tasks: Task 1.0: Char Removal by Membrane Separation Technology The presence of char particles in the bio-oil causes problems in storage and end-use. Currently there is no well-established technology to remove char particles less than 10 micron in size. This study focused on the application of a liquid-phase microfiltration process to remove char particles from bio-oil down to slightly sub-micron levels. Tubular ceramic membranes of nominalmore » pore sizes 0.5 and 0.8m were employed to carry out the microfiltration, which was conducted in the cross-flow mode at temperatures ranging from 38 to 45 C and at three different trans-membrane pressures varying from 1 to 3 bars. The results demonstrated the removal of the major quantity of char particles with a significant reduction in overall ash content of the bio-oil. The results clearly showed that the cake formation mechanism of fouling is predominant in this process. Task 2.0 Acid Removal by Membrane Separation Technology The feasibility of removing small organic acids from the aqueous fraction of fast pyrolysis bio-oils using nanofiltration (NF) and reverse osmosis (RO) membranes was studied. Experiments were carried out with a single solute solutions of acetic acid and glucose, binary solute solutions containing both acetic acid and glucose, and a model aqueous fraction of bio-oil (AFBO). Retention factors above 90% for glucose and below 0% for acetic acid were observed at feed pressures near 40 bar for single and binary solutions, so that their separation in the model AFBO was expected to be feasible. However, all of the membranes were irreversibly damaged when experiments were conducted with the model AFBO due to the presence of guaiacol in the feed solution. Experiments with model AFBO excluding guaiacol were also conducted. NF membranes showed retention factors of glucose greater than 80% and of acetic acid less than 15% when operated at transmembrane pressures near 60 bar. Task 3.0 Acid Removal by Catalytic Processing It was found that the TAN reduction in bio-oil was very difficult using low temperature hydrogenation in flow and batch reactors. Acetic acid is very resilient to hydrogenation and we could only achieve about 16% conversion for acetic acid. Although it was observed that acetic acid was not responsible for instability of aqueous fraction of bio-oil during ageing studies (described in task 5). The bimetallic catalyst PtRe/ceria-zirconia was found to be best catalyst because its ability to convert the acid functionality with low conversion to gas phase carbon. Hydrogenation of the whole bio-oil was carried out at 125°C, 1450 psi over Ru/C catalyst in a flow reactor. Again, negligible acetic acid conversion was obtained in low temperature hydrogenation. Hydrogenation experiments with whole bio-oil were difficult to perform because of difficulty to pumping the high viscosity oil and reactor clogging. Task 4.0 Acid Removal using Ion Exchange Resins DOWEX M43 resin was used to carry out the neutralization of bio-oil using a packed bed column. The pH of the bio-oil increased from 2.43 to 3.7. The GC analysis of the samples showed that acetic acid was removed from the bio-oil during the neutralization and recovered in the methanol washing. But it was concluded that process would not be economical at large scale as it is extremely difficult to regenerate the resin once the bio-oil is passed over it. Task 5.0 Characterization of Upgraded Bio-oils We investigated the viscosity, microstructure, and chemical composition of bio-oils prepared by a fast pyrolysis approach, upon aging these fuels at 90ºC for periods of several days. Our results suggest that the viscosity increase is not correlated with the acids or char present in the bio-oils. The viscosity increase is due to formation of high molecular weight polymeric species over time. Our work also suggests that hydrogenation of the samples is beneficial in eliminating the viscosity increase. Task 6.0 Commercialization Assessment Renewable Oil International LLC (ROI) was responsible for Task 6.0, Commercialization Assessment. As part of this effort ROI focused on methods to reduce char carryover in the vapor stream from the fast pyrolysis reactor and residence time of the vapor in the reactor. Changes were made in the bio-oil recovery methodology and a reactor sweep gas used to reduce vapor residence time. Cyclones were placed in the vapor stream to reduce char particulate carryover. Microfiltration of the bio-oil was also researched to remove char particulate from the bio-oil. The capital cost for these improvements would be less than 2% of the total plant capital cost.« less
  • This is a Laboratory Analytical Procedure (LAP) for bio-oil analysis.
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