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Hydrogenolysis of biorefinery corncob lignin into aromatic phenols over activated carbon-supported nickel

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Abstract

Lignin is the most abundant renewable resource for production of bio-aromatic chemicals. However, the catalytic depolymerisation of lignin into phenolic monomers is still challenging due to its intrinsic heterogeneity. Herein, we report that Ni/AC can serve as an efficient and stable catalyst in the hydrogenolysis of biorefinery corncob lignin into low-molecular-weight aromatics. This catalyst showed high activity towards reductive fragmentation of hydroxycinnamic esters and β-O-4 linkages through scission by reaction with hydrogen to cleave C–O bonds. Under optimal conditions, this catalytic system produced 31% selectivity towards unsaturated substituents containing coumarate and ferulate derivatives, which afforded mono-aromatic phenols (up to 12.1 wt%) derived from hydroxycinnamic acid moieties (8.1 wt%) and β-O-4 units (2.7 wt%), respectively. The use of non-precious metals to develop highly efficient heterogeneous catalysts makes this approach of great interest in the production of aromatic phenols for the valorisation of industrial lignin.

Graphical abstract: Hydrogenolysis of biorefinery corncob lignin into aromatic phenols over activated carbon-supported nickel

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Publication details

The article was received on 17 Jul 2018, accepted on 21 Sep 2018 and first published on 21 Sep 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8SE00359A
Citation: Sustainable Energy Fuels, 2018, Advance Article
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    Hydrogenolysis of biorefinery corncob lignin into aromatic phenols over activated carbon-supported nickel

    S. Wang, W. Gao, L. Xiao, J. Shi, R. Sun and G. Song, Sustainable Energy Fuels, 2018, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C8SE00359A

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