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Efficient Mild Organosolv Lignin Extraction in a Flow-Through Setup Yielding Lignin with High beta-O-4 Content

Zijlstra, D. S., Analbers, C. A., de Korte, J., Wilbers, E. & Deuss, P. J., Dec-2019, In : Polymers. 11, 12, 17 p., 1913.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Current lignin fractionation methods use harsh conditions that alter the native lignin structure, resulting in a recalcitrant material which is undesired for downstream processing. Milder fractionation processes allow for the isolation of lignins that are high in beta-aryl ether (beta-O-4) content, however, at reduced extraction efficiency. The development of improved lignin extraction methods using mild conditions is therefore desired. For this reason, a flow-through setup for mild ethanosolv extraction (120 degrees C) was developed. The influence of acid concentration, ethanol/water ratio, and the use of other linear alcohol co-solvents on the delignification efficiency and the beta-O-4 content were evaluated. With walnut shells as model feedstock, extraction efficiencies of over 55% were achieved, yielding lignin with a good structural quality in terms of beta-O-4 linking motifs (typically over 60 per 100 aromatic units). For example, lignin containing 66 beta-O-4 linking motifs was obtained with an 80:20 n-propanol/water ratio, 0.18 M H2SO4 with overall a good extraction efficiency of 57% after 5 h. The majority of the lignin was extracted in the first 2 hours and this lignin showed the best structural quality. Compared to batch extractions, both higher lignin extraction efficiency and higher beta-O-4 content were obtained using the flow setup.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1913
Number of pages17
JournalPolymers
Volume11
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec-2019

    Keywords

  • biomass, lignin, flow-through setup, organosolv extraction, high beta-O-4 content, REDUCTIVE CATALYTIC FRACTIONATION, PRIMARY ALCOHOL OXIDATION, FLOWTHROUGH PRETREATMENT, BIOMASS, ACID, DEPOLYMERIZATION, LIGNOCELLULOSE, OPTIMIZATION, VALORIZATION, SOLVOLYSIS

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