Catalytic conversion of glycerol to bio-based aromatics

Songbo He


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Aromatics are in important building blocks in the chemical industry to produce among others plastics. Currently aromatics are produced from fossil resources and thus have a negative impact on our planet. There is a strong driver to green-up the aromatics industry and one of the options is the use of waste biomass as the feed. In this PhD research, crude glycerol, which is abundantly available as a by-product of the biodiesel industry, was explored as a bio-based feedstock for the production of aromatics via a technology known as catalytic pyrolysis. It involves contacting the biomass, in this case glycerol, with a suitable catalyst at elevated temperatures. Catalyst performance was studied in detail and it was shown that deactivation is a major issue. A number of strategies for improved catalyst performance have been investigated, including the use of co-feeds (e.g., glycerol and oleic acid) and the use of binders in the catalyst formulation. The research described in this thesis has provided fundamental and applied insights which have been used for scale-up of the process to pilot-scale by BioBTX BV in Groningen, The Netherlands.
Originele taal-2English
KwalificatieDoctor of Philosophy
Toekennende instantie
  • Rijksuniversiteit Groningen
  • Heeres, Hero, Supervisor
  • Heeres, Arend, Co-supervisor
Datum van toekenning21-jun.-2022
Plaats van publicatie[Groningen]
StatusPublished - 2022

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