Fossil resources play a key role in our society and have been for the last 100 years. For a number of applications, sustainable alternatives are required. When it comes to the production of materials and fuels, the successful conversion of biomass to chemical building blocks is of the utmost importance.
One of the most promising compounds in this category is 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF), formed through acid-catalyzed dehydration of sugars. This molecule has a number of high-potential applications. The production of this molecule is not straight-forward, as its chemical and physical properties present a number of challenges. More fundamental knowledge about the acid-catalyzed dehydration of sugars to HMF is thus required. It was the target of the research presented this thesis to gain more fundamental knowledge on HMF formation.
Different ketose (i.e. fructose) and aldose (i.e. glucose) were tested to (i) obtain more fundamental knowledge of the reaction mechanisms involved and (ii) to find the most suitable sugar to convert to HMF. The research presented in this thesis indicates that the dehydration of sugars to HMF takes place through cyclic intermediates, which has implications for the conversion of aldose sugars, such as glucose, since they require isomerisation to ketoses before dehydration. It was also found that psicose is the most suitable sugar to convert to HMF and that methanol is a more suitable solvent than water.
PhD ceremony: Mr R. van Putten When: January 16, 2015 Promotor: prof. dr. ir. H.J. (Hero Jan) Heeres
The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) has appointed Professor Maria Loi and Professor Dirk Slotboom from the Faculty of Science and Engineering as members of the Academy.
The Dutch Research Council (NWO) has awarded three Vici grants, worth €1.5 million each, to three UG researchers. Prof. J.W Romeijn, Prof. S. Hoekstra, Prof. K.I. Caputi can use this money to develop an innovative line of research and to set up...
Reaching out to sustainable business owners is what Gjalt de Jong is all about. He sees the University as a director of innovation. An independent arbiter who can expedite the shift to a circular economy. To this end, he first needed to change...
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