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From lignin subunits to aggregates: insights into lignin solubilization

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Abstract

A fundamental understanding of lignin solubilization offers structural information that would benefit a variety of value added applications. Small angle neutron scattering (SANS) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy were used to study correlations between the functional groups/substructures and solution structures of lignin in DMSO-d6 and 0.1 N NaOD. Three types of alkaline lignins (Sigma-Aldrich kraft lignin, poplar wood kraft lignin, and corncob soda lignin), exhibiting different degrees of aggregation in 0.4 wt% solutions, were investigated to identify the major intermolecular interactions that cause lignin aggregation. Intermolecular hydrogen bonding, non-covalent π–π interactions between phenyl rings, lignin chain conformation and the degree of branching were discussed. Different operating forces for lignin solubilization and aggregation were found in DMSO-d6 and NaOD solutions.

Graphical abstract: From lignin subunits to aggregates: insights into lignin solubilization

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Publication details

The article was received on 28 Mar 2017, accepted on 30 May 2017 and first published on 30 May 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7GC00944E
Citation: Green Chem., 2017, Advance Article
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    From lignin subunits to aggregates: insights into lignin solubilization

    W. Zhao, L. Xiao, G. Song, R. Sun, L. He, S. Singh, B. A. Simmons and G. Cheng, Green Chem., 2017, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C7GC00944E

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