Catalytic fast pyrolysis of biomass to produce furfural using heterogeneous catalysts


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Publication Details

Author list: Zhang, Wennan

Publication year: 2017

Start page: 292

End page: 298

Number of pages: 7

ISSN: 0165-2370

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaap.2017.07.022

View additional information: View in Web of Science


Furfural is a valuable chemical, the production of furfural from renewable biomass resources becomes more attractive in recent years. In this study, biomass fast pyrolysis with heterogeneous catalysts (titanium compounds (TiN, TiO2 and TiOSO4) and metal nitrides (MoN, GaN and VN)) for furfural production was investigated experimentally by means of pyrolysis-gas chromatography/mass-spectrometry (Py-GC/MS). The measurement results indicated that TiN and GaN promoted the furfural compounds production notably mainly through direct decomposition of oligosaccharides. The formation of furfural was promoted when the amount of TiN was increased, and the yield of furfural formed was about 5.5 times the size of that from non-catalytic pyrolysis when TiN/cellulose mass ratio was 4. The furfural yield decreased when the pyrolysis residence time increased from 10 to 30 s, which suggests competitive reactions (formation of 1, 6-anhydro-beta.-D-glucopyranose) against the formation of furfural. TiN, as a catalyst for fast pyrolysis towards furfural production, can be well applied to agriculture biomass residues. Comparing three biomass residues: corncob, wheat straw and cotton stalk, corncob showed higher furfural yield due to the higher holocellulose content, while wheat straw showed higher furfural selectivity.


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