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Title: Effect of temperature during wood torrefaction on the formation of lignin liquid intermediates

Author: Pelaez-Samaniego, Manuel Raul; Yadama, Vikram; Garcia-Perez, Manuel; Lowell, Eini; McDonald, Armando G.;

Date: 2014

Source: Journal of Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis. 109: 222-233. 12 p.

Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Description: Torrefaction enhances physical properties of lignocellulosic biomass and improves its grindability. Energy densification, via fuel pellets production, is one of the most promising uses of torrefaction. Lignin contributes to self-bonding of wood particles during pelletization. In biomass thermal pretreatment, part oflignin (in the form of lignin liquid intermediates – LLI) migrates from the cell wall and middle lamella and deposits on the fibers’ surfaces and/or inner surface of the secondary cell wall. This material can playan important role on bonding particles during wood pelletization as well as production of wood composites. The objective of this paper was to investigate the influence of torrefaction conditions on amount, composition, molecular weight, and pattern of deposition of LLI on wood cells. Torrefaction of extracted ponderosa pine in the range of temperatures 225–350C was conducted in a tube furnace reactor and the torrefied wood was extracted with dichloromethane (DCM) to isolate the lignin-rich soluble material. A maximum yield of DCM-soluble material was observed in wood torrefied at approximately 300C for30 min. ESI/MS revealed that the molecular weight of the removed material is less than 1200 g mol−1anddecreases as torrefaction temperature augments. Semiquantitative Py-GC/MS of the DCM-soluble material suggests that this lignin-rich material migrates and deposits on cells’ surfaces in amounts that depend on the torrefaction conditions. Py-GC/MS of the solid fraction after the DCM process showed a progressive reduction of products of the pyrolysis of lignin and levoglucosan as torrefaction temperature increased, revealing that lignin content in the solid decreased due in part to migration. SEM of torrefied particles helped to show the apparent formation of LLI during torrefaction. Results suggest that it is possible to control the thermal pretreatment conditions to increase or reduce the amount of lignin-rich material on fiber surfaces as required for downstream processes (e.g., fuel pellets or wood composites manufacture).

Keywords: Lignin, wood torrefaction, Ponderosa pine, wood pellets, wood composites

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Pelaez-Samaniego, Manuel Raul; Yadama, Vikram; Garcia-Perez, Manuel; Lowell, Eini; McDonald, Armando G. 2014. Effect of temperature during wood torrefaction on the formation of lignin liquid intermediates. Journal of Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis. 109: 222-233. 12 p.

 


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