Fast pyrolysis oils from lignocellulosic biomass are promising second-generation biofuels. Unfortunately, the application range for such oils is limited because of the high acidity (pH similar to 2.5) and the presence of oxygen in a variety of chemical functionalities, and upgrading of the oils is required for most applications. Herein, we report an experimental study on the upgrading of fast pyrolysis oil by catalytic hydrotreatment. A variety of heterogeneous noble-metal catalysts were tested for this purpose (Ru/C, Ru/TiO(2), Ru/Al(2)O(3), Pt/C, and Pd/C), and the results were compared to those obtained with typical hydrotreatment catalysts (sulfided NiMo/Al(2)O(3) and CoMo/Al(2)O(3)). The reactions were carried Out at temperatures of 250 and 350 degrees C and pressures of 100 and 200 bar. The Ru/C catalyst was found to be superior to the classical hydrotreating catalysts with respect to oil yield (up to 60 wt %) and deoxygenation level (up to 90 wt %). The upgraded products were less acidic and contained less water than the original fast pyrolysis oil. The HHV was about 40 MJ/kg, which is about twice the value of pyrolysis oil. Analyses of the products by (1)H NMR spectroscopy and 2D GC showed that the upgraded pyrolysis oil had lower contents of organic acids, aldehydes, ketones, and ethers than the feed, whereas the amounts of phenolics, aromatics, and alkanes were considerably higher.
- FORESTRY RESIDUE