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Catalytic hydrotreatment of pyrolysis liquids and fractions

Catalyst Development and Process Studies
PhD ceremony:W. Yin, PhD
When:January 06, 2017
Start:12:45
Supervisor:prof. dr. ir. H.J. (Hero Jan) Heeres
Co-supervisor:dr. R. Venderbosch
Where:Academy building RUG
Faculty:

The use of sustainable and renewable lignocellulosic biomass is of particular interest to (partly) replace fossil resources. Fast pyrolysis is a promising technology to convert lignocellulosic biomass to a liquid energy carrier. The products, also known as fast pyrolysis liquids (PLs), have a higher energy density than solid biomass. The applications of PLs are limited due to a high water and oxygen content and limited storage stability. As such upgrading technologies are required to broaden the application range of PLs.

Catalytic hydrotreatment is such an attractive upgrading technology for PLs and leads to improved and tuneable product properties. The research described in this thesis involves the catalytic hydrotreatment of PLs and fractions thereof as well as model component studies using heterogeneous catalysts. Improved catalysts were developed and insights in the molecular transformations during the process have been obtained. In addition, process-product relations have been established which allow for selection of optimum process conditions for products with the desired properties (a.o. oxygen content and acidity). The insights obtained in this research will be valuable input for the design of efficient catalytic hydrotreatment processes for PLs.