Catalytic flash pyrolysis of oil-impregnated-wood and jatropha cake using sodium based catalysts

Ali Imran, Eddy A. Bramer, Kulathuiyer Seshan, Gerrit Brem

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17 Scopus citations


Catalytic pyrolysis of wood with impregnated vegetable oil was investigated and compared with catalytic pyrolysis of jatropha cake making use of sodium based catalysts to produce a high quality bio-oil. The catalytic pyrolysis was carried out in two modes: in-situ catalytic pyrolysis and post treatment of the pyrolysis vapors. The in-situ catalytic pyrolysis was carried out in an entrained flow reactor system using a premixed feedstock of Na2CO3 and biomass and post treatment of biomass pyrolysis vapor was conducted in a downstream fixed bed reactor of Na2CO3/γ-Al2O3. Results have shown that both Na2CO3 and Na2CO3/γ-Al2O3 can be used for the production of a high quality bio-oil from catalytic pyrolysis of oil-impregnated-wood and jatropha cake. The catalytic bio-oil had very low oxygen content, water content as low as 1wt.%, a neutral pH, and a high calorific value upto 41.8MJ/kg. The bio-oil consisted of high value chemical compounds mainly hydrocarbons and undesired compounds in the bio-oil were either completely removed or considerably reduced. Increasing the triglycerides content (vegetable oil) in the wood enhanced the formation of hydrocarbons in the bio-oil. Post treatment of the pyrolysis vapor over a fixed bed of Na2CO3/γ-Al2O3 produced superior quality bio-oil compared to in-situ catalytic pyrolysis with Na2CO3. This high quality bio-oil may be used as a precursor in a fractionating process for the production of alternative fuels. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)236-246
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis
StatePublished - Nov 24 2015


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