skip to main content
DOE PAGES title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Valorization of Aqueous Waste Streams from Thermochemical Biorefineries

Abstract

Thermochemical conversion of lignocellulosic biomass is an enticing route to produce fuels and oxygenated chemicals and could enable circular carbon utilization. In most thermochemical conversion processes, however, some chemical co-products are lost in aqueous waste streams that are both dilute and heterogeneous. Cost-competitive isolation of these chemical co-products is challenging due to the high-purity requirements typically necessary for bulk chemical production. In this work, we show the production and isolation of two biomass-derived monomers, phenol and catechol, from a comprehensively characterized aqueous waste stream generated via catalytic fast pyrolysis. Specifically, we separate phenol and catechol to 97 wt% purity using the industrially relevant processes of liquid-liquid extraction, distillation, and recrystallization. Techno-economic analysis predicts that a mixed phenolics stream can be produced from the waste stream at a minimum selling price of $1.06 kg-1. Overall, this work demonstrates an approach to high-purity oxygenated aromatic compounds that is potentially economically feasible and technically achievable which increases the atom efficiency of thermochemical conversion through waste stream valorization.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1]
  1. National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Bioenergy Technologies Office (EE-3B)
OSTI Identifier:
1543354
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1550784
Report Number(s):
NREL/JA-5100-74540
Journal ID: ISSN 1463-9262
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Type:
Published Article
Journal Name:
Green Chemistry
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 21; Journal Issue: 15; Journal ID: ISSN 1463-9262
Publisher:
Royal Society of Chemistry
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
09 BIOMASS FUELS; thermochemical conversion; lignocellulosic biomass; biomass fuels; biorefineries; carbon utilization

Citation Formats

Wilson, Nolan, Dutta, Abhijit, Pleitner, Brenna P, Mukarakate, Calvin, Magrini, Kimberly A, Schaidle, Joshua A, Michener, William E, Beckham, Gregg T, and Nimlos, Mark R. Valorization of Aqueous Waste Streams from Thermochemical Biorefineries. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1039/C9GC00902G.
Wilson, Nolan, Dutta, Abhijit, Pleitner, Brenna P, Mukarakate, Calvin, Magrini, Kimberly A, Schaidle, Joshua A, Michener, William E, Beckham, Gregg T, & Nimlos, Mark R. Valorization of Aqueous Waste Streams from Thermochemical Biorefineries. United States. doi:10.1039/C9GC00902G.
Wilson, Nolan, Dutta, Abhijit, Pleitner, Brenna P, Mukarakate, Calvin, Magrini, Kimberly A, Schaidle, Joshua A, Michener, William E, Beckham, Gregg T, and Nimlos, Mark R. Mon . "Valorization of Aqueous Waste Streams from Thermochemical Biorefineries". United States. doi:10.1039/C9GC00902G.
@article{osti_1543354,
title = {Valorization of Aqueous Waste Streams from Thermochemical Biorefineries},
author = {Wilson, Nolan and Dutta, Abhijit and Pleitner, Brenna P and Mukarakate, Calvin and Magrini, Kimberly A and Schaidle, Joshua A and Michener, William E and Beckham, Gregg T and Nimlos, Mark R},
abstractNote = {Thermochemical conversion of lignocellulosic biomass is an enticing route to produce fuels and oxygenated chemicals and could enable circular carbon utilization. In most thermochemical conversion processes, however, some chemical co-products are lost in aqueous waste streams that are both dilute and heterogeneous. Cost-competitive isolation of these chemical co-products is challenging due to the high-purity requirements typically necessary for bulk chemical production. In this work, we show the production and isolation of two biomass-derived monomers, phenol and catechol, from a comprehensively characterized aqueous waste stream generated via catalytic fast pyrolysis. Specifically, we separate phenol and catechol to 97 wt% purity using the industrially relevant processes of liquid-liquid extraction, distillation, and recrystallization. Techno-economic analysis predicts that a mixed phenolics stream can be produced from the waste stream at a minimum selling price of $1.06 kg-1. Overall, this work demonstrates an approach to high-purity oxygenated aromatic compounds that is potentially economically feasible and technically achievable which increases the atom efficiency of thermochemical conversion through waste stream valorization.},
doi = {10.1039/C9GC00902G},
journal = {Green Chemistry},
number = 15,
volume = 21,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {7}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record
DOI: 10.1039/C9GC00902G

Save / Share:

Works referenced in this record:

Synthesis of Transportation Fuels from Biomass: Chemistry, Catalysts, and Engineering
journal, September 2006

  • Huber, George W.; Iborra, Sara; Corma, Avelino
  • Chemical Reviews, Vol. 106, Issue 9, p. 4044-4098
  • DOI: 10.1021/cr068360d

Opportunities and challenges for a sustainable energy future
journal, August 2012

  • Chu, Steven; Majumdar, Arun
  • Nature, Vol. 488, Issue 7411, p. 294-303
  • DOI: 10.1038/nature11475

Catalytic conversion of biomass to biofuels
journal, January 2010

  • Alonso, David Martin; Bond, Jesse Q.; Dumesic, James A.
  • Green Chemistry, Vol. 12, Issue 9, p. 1493-1513
  • DOI: 10.1039/c004654j

Emerging catalytic processes for the production of adipic acid
journal, January 2013

  • Van de Vyver, Stijn; Román-Leshkov, Yuriy
  • Catalysis Science & Technology, Vol. 3, Issue 6, p. 1465-1479
  • DOI: 10.1039/C3CY20728E

Chemical Routes for the Transformation of Biomass into Chemicals
journal, June 2007

  • Corma, Avelino; Iborra, Sara; Velty, Alexandra
  • Chemical Reviews, Vol. 107, Issue 6, p. 2411-2502
  • DOI: 10.1021/cr050989d

Renewable fuels and chemicals by thermal processing of biomass
journal, March 2003