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Research ENTEG

defence W. Guo: "Development of Catalytic Strategies and Microreactor Technology for the Synthesis of Bio-based Furanics from Lignocellulose-derived Carbohydrates"

When:Fr 03-09-2021 09:00 - 10:00
Where:Academy Building

Promotors: Prof.dr. J. Yue and H.J. Heeres

Abstract: Utilization of biomass as a green and renewable alternative to conventional fossil feedstock represents a promising solution towards developing a sustainable energy and chemical industry in the future. In the bio-refinery network, furanic platform chemicals such as furfural and 5-hydroxylmethylfurfural (HMF) stand out as an important bridge connecting lignocellulosic biomass and diverse value-added fuels, chemicals and materials which are (analogous to those) typically derived from the conventional fossil fuel refineries. In the past decades, chemical and catalytic aspects of biomass conversion to furfural or HMF have been extensively investigated, while the dedicated reactor engineering concepts are not widely tested yet. Continuous flow microreactor has been characterized by the largely enhanced mass and heat transfer efficiencies which benefits particularly the multiphase reaction systems. Compared with conventional lab-scale batch reactors, application of microreactor in the synthesis of bio-based furanics has been much less reported but is receiving rapidly increasing attentions. In this research project, efforts have been given to developing efficient catalytic strategies and microreactor technology for the synthesis of HMF or furfural from the lignocellulose-derived C6 or C5 sugars, by exploring (i) the insights into the kinetics and reaction network of the homogeneous acid-catalyzed sugar dehydration to HMF and furfural, (ii) the structure-acidity-performance relation of the heterogeneous bi-functional acid catalyst for the glucose dehydration to HMF, and (iii) utilization of microreactors as a platform for reaction and kinetic studies and as a tool for process intensification and up-scaling.