Biomass valorisation by staged degasification A new pyrolysis-based thermochemical conversion option to produce value-added chemicals from lignocellulosic biomass

P. J. de Wild*, H. den Uil, J. H. Reith, J. H. A. Kiel, H. J. Heeres

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Pyrolysis of lignocellulosic biomass leads to an array Of useful solid, liquid and gaseous products. Staged degasification is a pyrolysis-based conversion route to generate value-added chemicals from biomass. Because of different thermal stabilities of the main biomass constituents hemicellulose. cellulose and lignin, different temperatures may be applied fora step-wise degradation into valuable chemicals. Staged degasification experiments were conducted with deciduous (beech, poplar), coniferous (spruce) and herbaceous (straw) biomass. Thermogravimetry was used to estimate appropriate temperatures for a two-stage degradation process that was subsequently evaluated on bench-scale by moving bed and bubbling fluidised bed pyrolysis experiments. Degasification in two consecutive stages at 250-300 degrees C and 350-400 degrees C leads to mixtures of degradation products that originate from the whole biomass. The mixtures that were generated at 250-300 degrees C, predominantly contain hemicellulose degradation products, while the composition of the mixtures that were obtained at 350-400 C, is more representative for cellulose. Lignin-derived fragments are found in both mixtures. Yields up to 5 wt% of the dry feedstock are obtained for chemicals like acetic acid, furfural, acetol and levoglucosan. Certain groups of thermal degradation products like C(2)-C(4) oxygenates and phenols are formed in yields up to 3 wt%. Highest yields have been obtained for beech wood, Staged degasification is a promising pyrolysis-based route to valorise lignocellulosic biomass. Clear opportunities exist to increase product yields and selectivities by optimisation of reactor conditions, application of catalysts and specific biomass pretreatments like demineralisation and pre-hydrolysis. (C) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)124-133
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - May-2009
Event18th International Symposium on Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis - , Spain
Duration: 18-May-200823-May-2008


  • Staged degasification
  • Valorisation
  • Biomass
  • TGA
  • Pyrolysis
  • Value-added chemicals
  • WOOD

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