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Lignin Depolymerization Over CuO–MgO–Al2O3 Mixed Oxide Catalysts in Supercritical Ethanol: Effect of Catalyst Preparation Methods

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In this research, we applied various CuO–MgO–Al2O3 mixed oxide catalysts prepared by different synthesis methods to lignin depolymerization in supercritical ethanol. It is found that CuO–MgO– Al2O3 catalyst plays a promotional role in producing monomeric compounds from the depolymerization of lignin in supercritical ethanol without supplying the gas phase hydrogen. When it comes to compare the catalyst preparation methods, CuO(30)MgAl(2:1) prepared by co-precipitation (CPT) method showed much higher yield of monomeric compounds and gas phase products than CuO(30)/MgAl(2:1) by incipient wetness impregnation (IWI) method. This is attributed to the formation of highly dispersed CuO species in the former catalyst, as confirmed by XRD analysis. When the acid and base characteristics of the support material were changed by varying the Mg:Al ratio from 2:1 to 2:3, there was no remarkable change in the activity. It can be summarized that the higher dispersion of CuO prepared by CPT method is a more decisive factor to provide the higher yield of monomeric compounds in lignin depolymerization over CuO–MgO–Al2O3 catalyst in supercritical ethanol, while acidity and basicity of the support is not a main factor.
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Keywords: CO-PRECIPITATION (CPT); CONCENTRATED SULFURIC ACID HYDROLYSIS LIGNIN (CSAHL); IN-SITU HYDROGEN; INCIPIENT WETNESS IMPREGNATION (IWI); SUPERCRITICAL ETHANOL

Document Type: Short Communication

Publication date: 01 February 2017

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  • Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Letters (NNL) is a multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal consolidating nanoscale research activities in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine into a single and unique reference source. NNL provides the means for scientists, engineers, medical experts and technocrats to publish original short research articles as communications/letters of important new scientific and technological findings, encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of the physical sciences, engineering and medicine.
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