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Issue 13, 2019
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Kinetic and mechanistic insights into hydrogenolysis of lignin to monomers in a continuous flow reactor

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Abstract

Industrial biorefineries remain limited due to inefficient valorization of their lignin streams. Rarely can a lignin depolymerization method be combined with a current polysaccharide-centric biorefinery process. Hydrogenolysis is among the more promising methods for depolymerizing lignin on an industrial scale. We performed reaction kinetics and mechanistic studies on lignin model compounds to understand lignin hydrogenolysis pathways, demonstrating that lignin end-units and internal units react significantly differently. Understanding the reaction mechanism and its sensitivity to variables helped us establish a continuous lignin upgrading process from various fractionated lignins. Near-theoretical yields of lignin platform monomers with >80% overall product selectivity were obtained in a continuous hydrogenolysis process using a Pd/C catalyst.

Graphical abstract: Kinetic and mechanistic insights into hydrogenolysis of lignin to monomers in a continuous flow reactor

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
25 Mar 2019
Accepted
25 Apr 2019
First published
25 Apr 2019

Green Chem., 2019,21, 3561-3572
Article type
Paper

Kinetic and mechanistic insights into hydrogenolysis of lignin to monomers in a continuous flow reactor

Y. Li, B. Demir, L. M. Vázquez Ramos, M. Chen, J. A. Dumesic and J. Ralph, Green Chem., 2019, 21, 3561
DOI: 10.1039/C9GC00986H

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