Gamma-valerolactone biorefinery: Catalyzed birch fractionation and valorization of pulping streams with solvent recovery

Marianna Granatier, Huy Quang Lê, Yibo Ma, Marja Rissanen, Inge Schlapp-Hackl, Daryna Diment, Anna Zaykovskaya, Juha-Pekka Pokki, Mikhail Balakshin, Marjatta Louhi-Kultanen, Ville Alopaeus, Herbert Sixta*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
18 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

In this study, we propose a full gamma-valerolactone (GVL) organosolv biorefinery concept including the utilization of all pulping streams, solvent recovery, and preliminary material and energy balances. GVL is a renewable and non-toxic solvent that fractionates woody biomass. The silver birch chips were pulped (45–65 wt% GVL, 150 °C, 2 h) under a series of acid-catalyzed conditions (5–12 kg H2SO4/t), and the fully bleached pulp was spun into fibers by the IONCELL® process and knitted into the fabric. The dissolved lignin was precipitated by water from spent liquor (1:1) and processed into polyhydroxyurethane. Most of the dissolved hemicelluloses were in the form of xylose, therefore, the crystallization efficiency of xylose from spent liquor in the presence of residual GVL was studied. The GVL recovery rate in the lab column was 66%, however by increasing the number of equilibrium stages, 99% recovery could be achieved.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere17423
Number of pages14
JournalHeliyon
Volume9
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2023
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Biomass
  • Biorefinery
  • Cellulose
  • Gamma-valerolactone
  • Pulping

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