Lignin-first integrated hydrothermal treatment (HTT) and synthesis of low-cost biorefinery particles

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Researchers

Research units

  • VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

Abstract

Hydrothermal treatments (HTT) are used in the biorefineries to effectively valorize carbohydrate fractions and their products. However, lignin is often marginalized as a secondary component. Herein, we propose a new biorefinery approach focused on lignin valorization. We demonstrate that high-value lignins can be extracted using a simple, green and affordable process consisting of an optimized HTT followed by lignin extraction with aqueous acetone under ambient conditions. Significantly, the chemical structure and molecular mass of the lignin can be tailored by the selection of the process variables while maintaining a high yield, in the range of ~ 60-90%. For example, the average molecular mass (Mw) of the isolated lignins is in the range between 2.5 and 5 kDa while the amount of β-O-4 linkages is 4-28 per 100 Ar. The extracted lignins are further used to generate micro and nanoparticles by using an aerosol flow system. The introduced lignin profiling affords control of particle properties, including average size and distribution, surface energy and wettability. Overall, the suggested approach allows to customize lignin products while achieving a 58% reduction in the lignin particles production costs compared to the lowest prime figures reported so far.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1230-1239
JournalACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering
Volume8
Issue number2
Early online date2019
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jan 2020
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Research areas

  • Autohydrolysis, Biorefinery, Lignin valorization, Lignocellulose, Nanoparticles

ID: 39567645