2-Methylfuran from pinewood by molten-salt hydropyrolysis and catalytic hydrogenation of the furfural intermediate


This study explores the production pathway of 2-methylfuran (MF) renewable fuels by integrating molten salt hydropyrolysis of lignocellulosic biomass for furfural generation and subsequent catalytic hydrodeoxygenation of furfural to MF in the vapour phase using copper-based catalysts. In response to the increasing demand for biofuels, where bioethanol-blended gasoline dominates, MF presents itself as a promising fuel additive with improved fuel characteristics. This work focuses on optimizing MF production from pine wood pyrolysis using an innovative reaction environment, being chloride molten salts, eliminating the need for biomass fractionation. Employing a tandem micro-reactor and evaluating two Cu-based catalysts, Cu/SiO2 and Cu/activated carbon (Cu/AC), the study aims to identify optimal conditions for MF production in this integrated process. The process demonstrated selective furfural production in the first step, with subsequent high-yield conversion to 2-methylfuran (up to 92% selectivity) using Cu/AC. Optimal hydrodeoxygenation occurred at 400–500 °C, yielding approximately 10.3 wt% of 2-methylfuran on a dry pinewood basis. Cu/AC outperformed Cu/SiO2 due to higher copper loading and dispersion. Notably, chloromethane, a byproduct from molten salt hydropyrolysis, was removed entirely during hydrodeoxygenation with Cu/AC. The study outlined conditions for an in situ conversion route from pinewood to furfural and 2-methyl furan in the vapour phase.

Publication DOI: https://doi.org/10.1039/d4se00106k
Divisions: College of Engineering & Physical Sciences > School of Infrastructure and Sustainable Engineering > Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry
College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
Funding Information: The authors would like to acknowledge the ABC-Salt project (grant agreement number 764089) for the financial support and collaboration.
Additional Information: This article is licensed under aCreative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/).
Publication ISSN: 2398-4902
Last Modified: 18 Jul 2024 07:32
Date Deposited: 22 May 2024 17:25
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Related URLs: https://pubs.rs ... 4/se/d4se00106k (Publisher URL)
http://www.scop ... tnerID=8YFLogxK (Scopus URL)
PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2024-05-13
Published Online Date: 2024-05-13
Accepted Date: 2024-05-07
Authors: León, Adriana Estrada
Ulloa-Murillo, Leidy Marcela
Ghysels, Stef
Nowakowski, Daniel (ORCID Profile 0000-0001-8056-5316)
Prins, Wolter
Ronsse, Frederik


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